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Modi stirs controversy, says Patel should have been India's first PM

Hailing Patel as the man who worked tirelessly for the unity of the country, Modi said he felt sadness from his heart over the fact that Patel could not become the nation's first prime minister

Narendra Modi
Narendra Modi
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Chief Minister and Bharatiya Janata Party's prime ministerial candidate stirred a political controversy on Tuesday, by saying he wished India's first home minister, Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel, had been the country's first prime minister.

Addressing participants at a function to inaugurate a museum dedicated to Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel here, Modi underlined the need for unity in the country and denounced the culture of violence.

"I wish Patel had become the first Prime Minister of India. Patel was a visionary. In 1919, when he was a councillor in Gujarat, he made sure that a womens' reservation bill was passed," Modi said.

Hailing Patel as the man who worked tirelessly for the unity of the country, Modi said he felt sadness from his heart over the fact that Patel could not become the nation's first prime minister, and added that the nation would feel this loss forever.

"He worked for the unity of the country, and has left behind a rich legacy for us. But sadly, whether it is terrorism, or Maoism, attempts are being made to break the country. But, I know, that they will not be successful at their attempts. In the land of Gandhi and Patel, the culture of guns and bombs will never succeed."

"It is need of hour for the youth to abandon the path of bombs and gun politics. Nation building is done with unity and service," he added.

Modi said that if Patel had become the first Prime Minister of India, then the face of the country would have been something else.

"Those who have gone on the wrong path should come back and work for the growth and betterment of the country." Modi said.

At the same time, he welcomed Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for the event and thanked him for all the awards that the Centre had bestowed upon Gujarat for good governance.

He said the awards had inspired his government to work harder.

"Dear Prime Minister, I thank you for instituting the awards for good governance. In your tenure, Gujarat has won more than 90 awards," said Modi.

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@SinghRPN
Today we talk of #RunForUnity,let us not forget dividing the legacy of our national icons is the worst disservice we can do to our country
@milinddeora
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@digvijaya_28
Or another example of Double Speak ?
@thekiranbedi
Appears that while the party in power is grooming new generation of leaders, those in Opposition are stuck in the past!~Harder to recover?
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@Swamy39
@vishnuramacha11 : Red my earlier tweet
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Greetings to people of Madhya Pradesh on the State's Foundation Day. I pray that MP is blessed with record development in the coming years.
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चन्‍द्रशेखर राव को बधाई. तेलंगाना राज्‍य का मेरा संकल्‍प एवं सपना पूरा, तेलंगाना की नदियों का ध्‍यान रखेंगें.
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@drharshvardhan
Remember Indira Gandhi the former PM of India who had to sacrifice her life on this day thirty years back - shall always be remembered .
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Congratulations @Dev_Fadnavis. I am sure you will lead Maharashtra to great new heights. #MahaCM
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@nsitharaman
Good wishes to @Dev_Fadnavis on taking charge as CM of Maharashtra.
@RSSorg
Bharat is existing today to think n talk about is due to Sardar Patel’s statesmanship firm administration n true Nationalistic vision

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