New Delhi: The rift within the National Democratic Alliance over Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi seems to be growing. After the Janata Dal (United), now the Shiv Sena has hinted that it wants the Bharatiya Janata Party to decide on its Prime Ministerial candidate.
"Narendra Modi was not in the PM race when Sushma Swaraj met Bal Thackeray. Let the BJP decide on the PM candidate first, we will decide after that," Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray said.
Late Shiv Sena founder Bal Thackeray had earlier backed senior BJP leader Sushma Swaraj for the PM's post. His statement comes even as the JD(U) is likely to adopt a political resolution at its national executive later this week asking the BJP to name its PM candidate.
The resolution will also state clearly that Prime Ministerial candidate must have impeccable secular credentials. JD(U) sources say that if Modi is named as the PM candidate, they will walk out of the NDA, even if it means the BJP withdrawing support to the Bihar government.
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar is opposed to Narendra Modi being projected as the PM candidate. Congress leader Rasheed Mashood said, "The BJP thinks it will fool everyone. But JD(U) is smart. The BJP's intentions are clear, but they are not announcing it. And JD(U) wants them to make the announcement soon."
"Advani hasn't given his approval or opposed to Modi. I will comment only after he takes a decision," JD(U) leader Shivanand Tiwari said.
The Congress has said that it is time for the BJP allies to take a stand. "Time has come for the allies of the NDA to decide and announce to everyone whether they are with sectarian and communal forces," Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Manish Tewari said.