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Is JD(S) Going Soft on BJP? Modi and Deve Gowda's Exchange Over Statue of Unity Visit Sparks Buzz

Deve Gowda's repeated appreciation for PM Narendra Modi and his party's conduct during the recently concluded Assembly session has given rise to speculation within the state's political circles that JD(S) was going soft on the Centre.

PTI

Updated:October 14, 2019, 9:26 PM IST
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Is JD(S) Going Soft on BJP? Modi and Deve Gowda's Exchange Over Statue of Unity Visit Sparks Buzz
File photo of Prime Minister Narendra Modi (L) and former Prime minister of India (R) Deve Gowda.

Bengaluru: Acknowledging JD(S) supremo H D Deve Gowda lauding his efforts towards constructing the world's tallest statue of Sardar Vallabhai Patel in Gujarat, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has expressed happiness over the former PM's recent visit to the Statue of Unity.

Gowda, who has been openly critical of the BJP and Modi in the past, also had recently appreciated Modi for plogging barefoot at a beach in Mamallapuram and termed it "inspiring."

The former prime minister's repeated appreciation for Modi and his party's conduct during the recently concluded Assembly session has given rise to speculation within the state's political circles that JD(S) was going soft on the BJP-led government at the Centre.

"Former Prime Minister Shri H D Deve Gowda praised the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi for making of the world's tallest statue of Sardar Vallabhai Patel in Gujarat," a post on the Prime Minister's official website said.

Gowda recalled Ahmedabad airport was renamed as Sardar Vallabhai Patel International airport and that a memorial for the former Union Home Minister was built in his home town at Nadiad, Gujarat in the past, it said.

These have been brought to a logical end by the construction of worlds tallest statue for the Iron Man of India, it said.

In the visitor's book, Gowda said, "it is one of the great spots... which will be remembered for the contribution made by Shri Sardar Patel to bring (about) unity of the Nation as Home Minister and Deputy Prime Minister..."

He said it had been made more attractive and indigenous and that is why people across the globe are visiting these places and enjoying the beauty of both the Statue of Unity as well as Sardar Sarovar Dam, the post said.

"Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has expressed happiness after former Prime Minister Shri H D Deve Gowda visited the Statue of Unity," it added.

Gowda visited the Statue of Unity in Gujarat on October 5, and tweeted about his visit along with pictures.

Reacting to this Modi tweeted, "Happy to see our former PM Shri @H_D_Devegowda Ji visit the Statue of Unity.

On the Prime Minister plogging on the Mamallapuram beach during his Tamil Nadu visit for his informal summit with Chinese President Xi Jinping, Gowda said it was an "inspiring" start towards a plastic-free India.

"I saw the video of @narendramodi plogging barefoot at a beach in Mamallapuram, TN. This is an inspiring start to traverse towards a plastic-free India," he said.

The warm Twitter exchange between Gowda and Modi and the bonhomie between JD(S) led by former Chief Minister H D Kumaraswamy with the ruling BJP in Karnataka during the recent state assembly session has triggered speculation that the party was going soft on the saffron party.

With the Congress in the assembly led by opposition leader Siddaramaaih attacking the BJP governments at the state and centre over handling of flood relief and delay in central aid, Kumaraswamy recently asked the government to take it as a "challenge" and respond to the needs of the affected people.

"This is not an issue or time to do politics," he said as he extended his party's cooperation to the government in relief measures being undertaken, and asked it to clear the anomalies that exist.

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