Asked about the stand of Advani on declaring Modi as PM face, Swaraj said, "Nobody is upset." She also denied that Advani's letter to BJP President Rajnath Singh was discussed.

Narendra Modi: From tea vendor to PM nominee
    
Irked over the Gujarat Chief Minister being made the Prime Ministerial candidate, Advani had written a scathing letter to Singh expressing disappointment over his style of functioning. Sources said the issue was discussed by Swaraj, Ananth Kumar and Balbir Punj with Advani who is still unhappy with the decision on Modi.
            
Soon after the Parliamentary Board anointed him as the prime ministerial candidate, Modi wrote on micro-blogging website Twitter, “I thank our allies of the NDA for their blessings and friends in the media for their good wishes.” 

Expressing his gratitude towards the party workers the Gujarat CM wrote, “I assure Karyakartas that I will leave no stone unturned to work for our victory in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.”

The saffron strongman also visited Advani and spent around 30 minutes with him. This was after Advani had written to Singh.
    
Interestingly, though Advani wrote the letter in the wake of Modi's elevation as PM candidate, he attacked Rajnath Singh and chose not to mention the Gujarat Chief Minister.

Advani, the seniormost leader in BJP after former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, has seemingly not found it easy to reconcile with the growing mobilisation around Modi in the party and impact of his rise on party's coalition prospects ahead of 2014 Lok Sabha elections.  

Advani is working chairman of BJP-led National Democratic Alliance and considered the leader most acceptable to present and potential allies of the party.  

BJP sources said Advani, along with Sushma Swaraj, Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha, had conveyed to party leaders that any decision on prime ministerial candidate should be taken only after the assembly polls to five states later this year.

However, there was growing pressure on announcement of Modi as prime ministerial candidate from sections of senior party leaders and the party rank and file.  

However, even as Sushma Swaraj and to an extent Murli Manohar Joshi sensed the party's mood and overwhelming sentiments in Modi's favour and fell in line, Advani decided to plough the lonely furrow.

Advani pointedly stayed away from the meeting that announced Modi's elevation, just as he had stayed from the national executive meeting in Goa in June when Modi was named the party campaign chief for the 2014 election.

(JPN/Agencies)      

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