NEW DELHI, July 16:
Notwithstanding allegations from various quarters against him, a new book quotes a student-days ‘friend’ of Prime Minister and asserts that charges against Narendra Modi of being anti-any particular community are far from true.
“We stayed in the same hostel room. The only point I want to make is while many people may call him anti-Muslim, he is not. If he was anti-Muslim, would be ever been one of my closest friends?,” Mr Modi’s friend Jasudbhai Pathan has been quoted in the new book.
The book ‘Narendra Damodardas Modi – The Making of a Legend’ penned by prominent activist and Sulabh founder Bindeshwar Pathak was released a few days back by RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat in the presence of BJP president Amit Shah in the capital.
The Prime Minister’s ‘friend’ Pathan is also quoted as saying: “I was with him (Modi) in the class 10th and 11th standards and also spent some time with him at the M N College in Visnagar”.
The pictorial volume offers lucid reading on the personal life and political graph of Mr Modi — with special focus on few chapters on his performance as the Prime Minister since 2014. The chapter on Mr Modi’s handling of foreign policy gets special mention. “….not having any previous experience in foreign affairs, Prime Minister Modi has astonished his admirers and critics by surpassing all previous dispensations in pursuing a foreign policy that is nothing less than brilliant,” says the author Mr Pathak.
He further writes, “Modi has set a frenetic pace of engagement with world leaders, and with nations large and small, leading from the front in promoting the message that India is ready and willing to actively engage and lay out a welcome mat to leaders, businessmen, potential investors and tourists”.
“India’s approach to the world since May 2014 has not been that of a supplicant, but rather of a nation with a high level of self-confidence and an over-riding ambition to be seen as a leading global power, not just a balancer,” says the book.
On the much controversial 2002 anti-Muslim riots in Gujarat when Mr Modi was the Chief Minister, the book says, after the “communal conflagration”, Mr Modi took all steps to control the situation – “Including imposing curfew and issuing shoot-at-sight orders to restore civic normalcy”.
However, the book says, “opposition parties accused Modi of being responsible for communal disturbance”. The book also refers to the Supreme Court appointed SIT exonerating him. (UNI)