Amid attack from party veterans, Gadkari demands action against those making ‘irresponsible’ statements

Nagpur(PTI): Amid rumblings in the Bharatiya Janata Party over Bihar poll rout and attack on its leadership by party veterans, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari on Wednesday strongly defended Prime Minister Narendra Modi and party president Amit Shah, saying they cannot be held responsible for the defeat.

Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said PM Narendra Modi and BJP president Shah alone cannot be held responsible for the party’s poor show in Bihar. Party veterans, like L.K. Advani, have been critical of the party leadership post-Bihar results.

Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said PM Narendra Modi and BJP president Shah alone cannot be held responsible for the party’s poor show in Bihar. Party veterans, like L.K. Advani, have been critical of the party leadership post-Bihar results.

“[Narendra] Modi and [Amit] Shah alone can’t be held responsible for the party’s poor show in Bihar. It is a collective responsibility of all party office bearers and leaders,” he said.

The former BJP president also demanded stringent action against those making “irresponsible” statements against Mr. Modi and Mr. Shah.

“I have told party chief Shah to initiate stringent action against those making irresponsible statements and causing damage to the party’s image,” Mr. Gadkari said.

‘We will talk to Advaniji’

On L.K. Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi, Yashwant Sinha and Shanta Kumar issuing a statement demanding a thorough review of the reasons for the poll rout, an act seen as a revolt against the leadership of Mr. Modi and Mr. Shah, the Union Minister said, “We will talk to Advaniji on the issue.”

He ruled out the possibility of Mr. Shah quitting his post following the debacle.

Mr. Gadkari also admitted that the grand alliance — the JD(U), RJD and Congress — has strengthened itself in Bihar. “Our efforts now would be to increase our strength in the State,” he said.