Congress No. 1 enemy in Modi’s surgical strike

HYDERABAD: In what appears to be a major change in the BJP game plan in tackling the Opposition barely five months from the 2019 general elections, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday isolated as the prime target and went soft on others.

“Uttar Pradesh has no problems with Mayawati or Akhilesh. Bengal has no problems with either Mamata or the Left. Congress is the only party which has to be banished from our country,” Modi said at a rally at Nizamabad where he clearly appeared to divide the Opposition by targeting only the Congress and saying that others were acceptable. This, despite Mamata, Mayawati and the Left, have been his very strong opponents.

The paradigm shift in the Bhartiya Janata Party’s strategy appears to be aimed at ensuring that the grand alliance of non-BJP parties does not take place. By picking on only the Congress, Prime Minister Narendra Modi sent a clear message — that we can all work together minus the Congress.

BJP sources said the idea behind Modi’s message is to convey to leaders like Mamata Banerjee and Akhilesh Yadav that they should not join hands with the Congress as it is a losing proposition for themselves too.

While addressing local issues too, Modi attacked Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao but later, focussed on the Congress, saying that “CM KCR is only an apprentice of the Congress and that the ones who have trained him are PhDs (Congress) and if they come to power, they will do 100 times the damage that the TRS can do.”

Modi strangely made no mention of TDP president N Chandrababu Naidu in his entire speech, despite the fact that Naidu and Congress chief Rahul Gandhi are scheduled to jointly address two public meetings in Khammam and Hyderabad on Wednesday.

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