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The larger point is that the Opposition, despite proforma protestations about the allegedly new low the "level of political discourse" Shah had touched, should be seriously anxious about the potential for negative impact its anybody-but-BJP strategy may have if Shah can galvanise the cadre and the convince the neutrals by honing this strategy of calling out Opposition forces supping with each other even while checking if they are being poisoned, as it were, by their new-found allies at the cost of showcasing a cogent, coherent agenda of governance for the nation. That the parties have started making preliminary moves with an eye on the election was evident from the timely Delhi visits of Trinamool Congress leader and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and her Andhra Pradesh counterpart and Telugu Desam Party chief N Chandrababu Naidu, who made it a point to meet other Opposition leaders to explore the possibility of a federal front. "It is the strength of the BJP that is affecting our opponents", he added. "In four years of rule, the BJP has worked tirelessly for the welfare of Dalits, underprivileged, illiterates", he said.

People can now see where those are who practised this untouchability and those who were its victims, he said in a reference to the party's rise and the fall of socialist parties and the Congress.

"The violent April 2 Dalit agitation was not just about the Supreme Court order on the SC/ST Prevention of Atrocities Act".

Addressing BJP MPs on the party's foundation day, Mr Modi kept the Congress in his line of fire and accused it of taking parliamentary proceedings "to a new low". He interacted with workers of five Lok Sabhaconstituencies and all 734 district presidents of the party via video conference.

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It is their national due to not cede this space, he said, asking them to put out true and correct information. The party's senior leaders were virtually ostracised from the prevalent political scenario. "Infact, if there is one party that has consistently been a victim of political untouchability, it is the BJP".

Modi thanked the party's "karyakartas" for their efforts to make the BJP reach from "Shunya" to "Shikhar".

Raj, an IRS officer who resigned to join politics in 2003, followed it up with another on Sunday afternoon, which appeared as a clarification but left with scope for interpretation, with some suggesting it exposed the anti-Dalit stand of the party.


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