Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Amit Shah said at the BJP’s foundation day function here on Wednesday that nationalism was the party’s identity and it was the responsibility of the new generation to take it forward.
“The party started by 11 people has become a family of 11 crore members. This has happened due to the sacrifices made by thousands of party workers,” Shah said while addressing a gathering of BJP activists at a function to mark its foundation day.
“Nationalism is the identity of our party and our three generations have maintained it by their sacrifices. Now it is our responsibility to protect, preserve and carry on this identity,” he said.
Shah began and concluded his speech with the slogan “Bharat Mata ki Jai”.
Shah said that the Bharatiya Jana Sangh, the BJP’s predecessor, and the BJP were founded to provide an optional political ideology to the country.
“After (Jawaharlal) Nehru became prime minister, his Western-oriented policies and decisions compelled nationalistic forces to pave the way for founding the Jana Sangh. If we had followed Nehru’s policies, we would have gone on the wrong path,” he said.
The party chief described Prime Minister Narendra Modi as the most popular leader in the world. He urged the party’s workers to take the policies and programmes of the central government to the people.
“No doubt, Narendra bhai is the world’s most popular leader. For the first time there is a government at the Centre which is making policies and taking decisions by keeping the poor and deprived (in mind),” he said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi also said in a tweet on Wednesday: “Guided by love for India & determined to take India to new heights of progress, generations of Karyakartas devoted their lives to the Party…. On #BJPFoundationDay, I salute crores of BJP Karyakartas who have always served the BJP with admirable vigour & great dedication. @BJP4India.”
The BJP was formed on April 6 1980, after the Janata Party, into which the erstwhile Bharatiya Jana Sangh had merged itself after the Emergency, splintered.