Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi earlier today address via live video conference two community outreach events in New Jersey and Chicago organized by the Overseas Friends of BJP.
While the speech dwelt on familiar themes two points in the speech stood out, one of which the media has also picked on.
#1 – India First
- Saying that his definition of “secularism” was “India First”, Mr. Modi revealed a new political coinage
- This pithy phrase is interesting for both its domestic and international connotation
- While his stated political intent was to suggest that domestic policy focus would rise beyond sectarian and communal considerations to put the Nation’s Interests first ….
- …. the phrase also implies the overarching theme for his foreign policy which will put India’s Interests above all else.
- Going by the media reportage following the speech perhaps we may be looking at the BJP’s campaign slogan for the next lok sabha !
#2 – एक भारत श्रेष्ठ भारत
- Perhaps wiser from the lesson of 2004 Mr. Modi also had a companion slogan to go with IndiaFirst with the heartland in mind with this hindi slogans that once again seeks to rise above communal fault lines while also setting an aspirational goal for India’s place in the global order
If last week’s speech at the BJP National Council was aimed at the base to rouse their passion, today’s rather sober and at times philosophical and introspective speech seems to have been aimed at a wider audience with these two potential campaign slogans standing out.