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Apr 27, 2013 at 11:34am IST

Religious leaders join the chorus for 'Narendra Modi as PM'

Haridwar: Joining the chorus for Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi as the Prime Minister are saints now. Modi, who shared the stage with yoga guru Baba Ramdev in Haridwar, said no riots have taken place in the state since he became the Chief Minister in 2002.

It was an event almost tailor made for Narendra Modi. Endorsing him, Ramdev said, "Crores of Indians are pinning hopes on Modi. That's why he is getting the blessings of several religious leaders in this function."

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In Haridwar, the saints gave Modi a resounding stamp of approval. Modi shared the dais with 30 religious leaders who openly backed him for the country's top job.

For Modi too, it was the perfect opportunity to claim credit for a more peaceful Gujarat. "There have been no riots since I became the Chief Minister in 2002. There used to be frequent riots in Gujarat. But since the past 12 years, there have been none," Modi said.

Modi even called Baba Ramdev his brother in arms and the target of a malicious campaign. "Baba Ramdev has suffered a lot. What was his fault? I want to ask the central government that if they didn't like what Ramdev said, then does that give them the freedom to make any accusations against Ramdev," Modi questioned.

Modi spent six hours at the event, performing rituals and holding a closed door meeting with Ramdev. Even the Congress can't deny the fact that Ramdev has a huge following around the country. Narendra Modi knows very well that despite all corruption allegations against him the support of the yoga guru would mean the backing of several religious leaders across India. And that's why he is going all out to woo this community because this could well be the game changer for him in an election year.