"Should I Maintain Relations Or...": PM Modi On No Alliance With Naveen Patnaik

In an interview with the news agency ANI, PM Modi spoke about the decision of the BJP to not ally with the Biju Janata Dal led by Naveen Patnaik.

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New Delhi:

As the Lok Sabha elections enter its final phase, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is confident of his party, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), returning to power at the Centre and forming a government in Odisha, where assembly elections are being held simultaneously.

In an interview with the news agency ANI, the Prime Minister spoke about the decision of the BJP to not ally with the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) led by Naveen Patnaik despite sharing a good relationship with the Odisha Chief Minister. PM Modi said that he was willing to sacrifice his relationship for the welfare of Odisha.

On being asked about his relations with Mr Patnaik, PM Modi told ANI that in politics, relations between leaders should be good.

"We have good relations with the leaders of all the political parties of India and in a democracy we do not have enmity. Now the question is whether I should maintain my relations or worry about the fate of Odisha. I chose to devote myself to the bright future of Odisha and if I have to sacrifice my relations for that, I will sacrifice them and after the elections, I will convince everyone that I have no enmity with anyone," he said.

The Prime Minister also emphasized that after the elections, he will convince everyone that he harbours no enmity with anyone.

Targeting the Naveen Patnaik-led BJP government in Odisha, PM Modi said that a group has taken over the entire Odisha system.

Mr Patnaik, who has been in power as the chief minister since 2000, is seeking a record sixth term in simultaneous state elections.

"There has been no progress in Odisha for the past 25 years. The biggest concern is that a toli (group) has taken over the entire Odisha system. It seems the whole system has been taken hostage. It is very natural that if Odisha comes out of it, then it will flourish," PM Modi added.

"It is a question of the authenticity of Odisha. Odisha has so many natural resources. It is sad to see the poor people of such a prosperous state. Odisha is in the prosperous states of India. It is such a natural property but it is also in the list of states with many poor people. The government is responsible for this. That is why the people of Odisha should get their rights. Odisha should get its identity," he added.

PM Modi further emphasised that on June 10, a BJP Chief Minister will take oath in Odisha.

"Odisha's fate is about to change. The government is changing. I have said that the expiry date of the current government of Odisha is June 4. And on June 10, BJP's Chief Minister will take oath in Odisha," the Prime Minister said.

Responding to a question about his party's performance in West Bengal in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections, PM Modi said that the eastern state will be the best performing one in the whole of India.

"In Bengal elections, TMC party is fighting for existence. You must have seen it in the last assembly elections, we had three seats. The people of Bengal took us from three to 80. We got a lot of support in the Lok Sabha in the last elections. This time, in the whole of India, the best-performing state will be West Bengal. The Bharatiya Janata Party will get the most success there," he said.

In 2019, BJP made strong inroads into TMC's hold in West Bengal, by winning 18 seats and being a close second to TMC, which won 22 seats.

The Prime Minister also mentioned that the elections in West Bengal are one-sided with the public supporting the BJP, which is creating panic in the Trinamool Congress government.

"There are constant murders and attacks. The BJP workers are being locked in jails before the elections. Despite all these atrocities, the public is coming out in large numbers to vote," PM Modi added.

Prime Minister Modi said that his one-point agenda if elected again would be to ensure that the country achieves the goal of Viksit Bharat.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)