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Wind blowing in favour of BJP: Vajpayee - The Economic Times

Political Bureau ()
February 3, 1998

Title: Wind blowing in favour of BJP: Vajpayee
Author: Political Bureau
Publication: The Economic Times
Date: February 3, 1998

Emboldened by the success of the party's election campaign in the
southern states, BJP's prime ministerial nominee Atal Behari
Vajpayee today predicted a clear victory for the BJP.

"Wind is blowing in favour of the BJP all over the country," said
Mr Vajpayee amidst loud chants of Ab ki baari Atal Behari.
Referring to his successful tour of South India, where he along
with party president K Advani, drew huge crowds, Mr Vajpayee
said: "If this is the scenario in the alien tracts of the South,
you can imagine the shape of things to come in the North". Mr
Vajpayee was addressing a rally here to mark the formal launch of
the campaign of the seven-party Front led by the BJP. The BJP's
prime ministerial nominee, who promised a honest, accountable and
stable government at the Centre, said the coming election would
usher in a new era in the nation's politics.

"The Congress(I)'s governance in the past 50 years has shattered
the confidence of the nation. A clear mandate for the BJP alone
can restore its confidence," Mr Vajpayee said.

Lashing out at both the Congress(I) and the United Front for
labelling the BJP as "communal" for staying in power, Mr Vajpayee
said that their hollow rhetoric will no longer work. "BJP, which

was projected by them as an untouchable has become the favourite
of the masses from Kanyakumari to Kashmir. The BJP is now
unstoppable, " he said.

Mr Vajpayee, who stressed the secular credentials of his party,
said the track records of the party-ruled govermnents have proved
that the charges against the BJP are false. "They were saying
that Mumbai will lose it secular and metropolitan character. Our
government is there for the past three years," he said.

Mr Vajpayee said the politics of his adversaries are based on
manipulations. "We were deprived of our rightful place by an
unholy gangup. And the contradictions within it speaks volumes
about the dishonesty of the arrangement, " Mr Vajpayee said.

The BJP leader said that a party-led dispensation would ensure
harmony between various communities and development of all
sections. "For us, this is not a fight to grab power. I have been
in the Opposition for the past 40 years and unlike the
Congress(I), we are of the view that an opposition has a key role
in democracy. If we win in this election, we will carry out all
those promises that we have made to the people," he said.

Dismissing the United Front, Mr Vajpayee said the front is not
even in the reckoning. "It is neither united nor a front. It is
an arrangement to share the loaves and fishes of office," he
said.

Speaking at the rally, Punjab chief minister Prakash Singh Badal,
his Haryana counterpart Bansi Lal and Mr George Fernandes lashed
out at the Congress for relying on a 'foreigner' to carry out
campaigns for it.


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