Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party takes aim at Narendra Modi's economic model

Mar 07 2014, 20:10 IST
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Narendra Modi faces pressure from a small anti-graft party. Reuters Narendra Modi faces pressure from a small anti-graft party. Reuters
SummaryNarendra Modi faces pressure from a small anti-graft party...

when Gujarat police briefly stopped his convoy, hours after the announcement of a month-long national election, to be held from April 7.

Opinion polls put Narendra Modi far ahead of his main rival, Rahul Gandhi of the governing Congress party, but short of a majority.

Arvind Kejriwal says both Congress and the BJP are beholden to corporate interests, and on Friday questioned Narendra Modi's relationship to India's richest business families.

His party is expected to win few seats in upcoming polls, but has tapped into a vein of public anger over a culture of entitlement among politicians, rising prices and endemic graft issues it has helped push to the top of the election agenda.

Gujarat, famed as the birthplace of Indian independence icon Mahatma Gandhi, is now at the centre of the national poll campaign. Narendra Modi's supporters often cite the state's economic success as the key reason they back him.

Opponents and some economists say Gujarat's good image owes much to a long tradition of entrepreneurship and point out the seafaring state was doing well before Narendra Modi took charge.

Other states, ranging from Delhi and the western state of Maharashtra to the southern states of Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu, attracted more foreign investment than Gujarat over the three years to 2012, the central bank says.

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