Chief Minister Narendra Modi may pose a challenge to Congress's young
scion Rahul Gandhi in India's next parliamentary elections, Time magazine
said. Modi, who figured on the cover page of the latest issues of the Asia
edition of the prestigious magazine, which hit the stands yesterday could
put up a challenge to Gandhi in particular after the recently held Uttar
Pradesh assembly elections, where Congress fared poorly.
two years left before the next national election in 2014, Congress hopes
its young scion, Sonia's son Rahul, will refresh the party, but a
resounding loss in a recent state election makes him look vulnerable,"
"Modi Means Business. But can he lead India?" says the
headline on the coverage which has a blown up picture of a serious looking
bearded Modi who has ruled Gujarat for more than a decade now. "Modi, 61,
is perhaps the only contender with the track record and name recognition
to challenge Rahul Gandhi," says the cover story by Jyoti Thottam, which
includes an interview of Modi.
"Many Indians recoil at any
mention of a man whose name is indelibly linked to Gujarat's brutality of
2002; choosing him as India's leader would seem a rejection of the
country's tradition of political secularism and a sure path to increased
tension with Muslim Pakistan, where he is reviled," it says.
when others think of someone who can bring India out of the mire of
chronic corruption and inefficiency � of a firm, no-nonsense leader who
will set the nation on a course of development that might finally put it
on par with China �they think of Modi," Time says.
story highlights the achievement of Gujarat under his Chief Minister ship.
"What's certain is that during his 10 years in power in Gujarat, the state
has become India's most industrialised and business-friendly territory,
having largely escaped the land conflicts and petty corruption that often
paralyze growth elsewhere in the nation," it said.
85 billion economy may not be the largest in India, but it has prospered
without the benefit of natural resources, fertile farmland, a big
population center like Mumbai or a lucrative high-tech hub like Bangalore.
Gujarat's success, even Modi's detractors acknowledge, is a result of good
planning � exactly what so much of India lacks," the magazine said.