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Advani wants a Nano ride
Published on 7 Mar. 2009 12:17 AM IST
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The Nano, Tata’s small car, became Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi’s vehicle for seeking investment at the Vibrant Gujarat summit in January. Now, it appears, even the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate, L K Advani, would like to hitch a ride. Tata Motor’s controversial small car project, which was relocated from Singur in West Bengal to Gujarat’s Sanand, is turning out to be the show-stopper for BJP’s poll campaign. Bookings for the Rs 1 lakh car will start on March 23 and by April, when the election campaign is at its peak, the cars will roll out into the market to an expected frenzied response. Party sources expect Nano to be the highlight Advani’s road-show, driving home the point that the BJP-ruled state offers good governance and a sound investment climate. Given the bitter experience of the Tatas in West Bengal, the symbolism of the Nano has also been used by some advertising agencies in their pitch to the central BJP to bag its election advertising account. Siddharth Nath Singh, a member of BJP’s national executive who looks after publicity, says the fact that the Nano got clearance in just two days is something the party would focus on in the campaign. ‘’This 48-hour clearance model which Gujarat has provided is what India is waiting for,” Singh adds. While the BJP is hard-selling Nano as a symbol of good governance, the Congress is criticising the sops Gujarat offered to the project. AICC(I) general secretary Rahul Gandhi himself spoke of the concessions given to the Nano project during a tour to Gujarat last month. “This (Gujarat) government can offer large sops to the Nano project. But, it is not doing anything for diamond workers” Gandhi said.

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