Bangalore: Seeking to play down the discordant notes between BJP and its ally JDU over the Modi-for-PM issue, senior party leader Arun Jaitley on Friday said there was no controversy on it and BJP wants to gain allies, not sacrifice any.

"I don't think there is any controversy. I have said Modi is certainly a very popular leader... certainly one of popular leaders of BJP. We are proud of that fact..", the opposition leader in Rajya Sabha said. Jaitley was responding to questions over barbs between BJP and JDU the Modi issue and reports that his party former President Nitin Gadkari had told Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar that his Gujarat counterpart would not be projected as prime ministerial candidate.

"..the fact is that we cannot react to media news items like this. We are a structured party. The party, whenever it takes a formal decision (on prime ministerial candidate), we can react only then," Jaitley said. "When we decide our candidate, we will let you know," he said.

Asked if the BJP would "sacrifice" Modi as the prime ministerial candidate to get more allies to NDA, "We are interested in gaining, not sacrificing." On possibility of a "Third Front" emerging as a stronger force than UPA or NDA in Lok Sabha polls, he said the third front was a failed idea. It had been experimented several times and on each occasion, it has been "a few months wonder."

"I have always believed we live in an era of coalition governments. The anchor of a coalition has to be a major national party. The anchor of a coalition in a large country like India cannot be a party which has 20 or 30 seats in Parliament. Besides being vulnerable and fragile, Indian political history does not support the idea or inspire the idea of a third front".


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