Advani's protest against Modi will spread: Bengal Congress

Kolkata, June 10 (IANS) Reacting to BJP leader L.K. Advani's decision to quit key party posts, Congress Rajya Sabha member Pradip Bhattacharya Monday said the stalwart's "revolt" against Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi would spread across the country.

"The person, who worked for the party for 52 years, is now hurt and devastated and drenched in pain, resigned today. I thank this 'loh mahapurush' (great ironman) for protesting against the elevation of Modi - the face of communalism," Bhattacharya, also West Bengal Congress chief, said at a programme here.

"The resignation is the first sign of protest against elevation of the 'communal' Modi. The protests will spread to other parts of the country," Bhattacharya said at a public rally.

A day after the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) named Modi to lead its campaign in the next Lok Sabha election, Advani declared Monday he was quitting all major party posts and accused most party leaders of pursuing "personal agenda".

Advani, who helped the party to grow from an also-ran into a powerful entity in the 1980s and gave it its hardline Hindutva ideology, had failed to persuade the BJP against elevating the ambitious Gujarat chief minister.

In a stinging letter to BJP president Rajnath Singh that was made public, Advani said he found it "difficult to reconcile either with the current functioning of the party or the direction in which it is going".

The three-para letter made no reference to Modi, who for years enjoyed Advani's patronage, but its tone made it evident that the resignation was linked to his elevation at a party meet in Goa Sunday.

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