Not easy to remove Modi : Munde

| 12 April 2002 21:32 IST

The former deputy chief minister of Maharashtra, Gopinath Munde, said on Friday that no ally of the National Democratic Alliance could afford to part ways when the opposition forces, including the Congress, were growing in the country.

His comments came after the Telugu Desam Party # which is a key NDA ally # called for the removal of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi for his "inability" to contol the riots in the state.

The BJP and its allies were dependant on each other at this stage, he said.

The BJP leader also said that the chief minister had done a lot for his state.

"Whatever may be the feeling of the people in the rest of the country, Gujarat has gained a lot from Modi, It is not that easy to remove him," he said.

"It is time to remain together and not go to any extremes," Munde said.

According to him, appointing Modi as the chief minister had helped the party strengthen its base in Gujarat.

He said that the NDA needed to come out with a strategy to counter the opposition's "anti-BJP propaganda".

The leader also dismissed the possibility of the Shiv Sena taking over the BJP vote bank in Maharashtra by propagating the cause of Hindutva more aggressively.

"Since the time we have aligned with them, it is the BJP which has grown more in Maharashtra," he said.

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