New Delhi: The clamour is growing within the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi to be the Prime Ministerial candidate for 2014. BJP Vice President Kalraj Mishra has admitted that Modi is among the top contenders even as allies JD(U) and Shiv Sena insisted that the alliance must make its candidate public.
"As far as I know, no Prime Ministerial candidate was finalised during the meeting with the RSS, but yes, Narendra Modi's name was prominent," Kalraj Mishra said.
JD(U) leader Devesh Thakur said, "The nation has the right to know who the Prime Ministerial candidate of every party is. We wish that the NDA will name its candidate after convening the meeting."
Earlier, the Shiv Sena had also asked the BJP to clarify its stand on its the Prime Ministerial candidate before the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray on Thursday said that the NDA should decide its candidate in advance.
Uddhav had also written that there is no unanimity in the NDA as it had also left a decision on its presidential candidate to the last minute.
Uddhav reiterated in party mouthpiece 'Saamna' that late Bal Thackeray had suggested Sushma Swaraj's name for the post and that if there are other candidate as well, all names should be discussed.
Bal Thackeray had said he would back Swaraj as she was the only "deserving and brilliant" person who fitted the bill. "She's a savvy woman and will perform her job as Prime Minister in a forceful and decisive manner," the late Sena chief had said.
However, last month, the Shiv Sena threw its weight behind Narendra Modi's prime ministerial ambitions. Sena leader Sanjay Raut had then told media, "We have no problem if Modi is declared as the NDA's PM candidate. Modi is definitely a strong leader. There is no doubt about that.. He has shown the country, shown Gujarat (what he is). Who to make the PM nominee will be NDA's decision, specially that of BJP, which is its largest party," Raut had said.