Published: April 27, 2020 7:50:21 pm
IN THE midst of the nationwide lockdown imposed in view of the COVID-19 pandemic, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been calling veteran BJP leaders in Gujarat, reminiscing and asking them to take care of their health. Some of the leaders who recently received such calls from the PM include Narottam Patel (84) from Surat, Narayan Patel (83) from Unjha, Hemaben Acharya (87) from Junagadh and Dr AK Patel (91) from Mehsana.
Speaking to The Indian Express, Narottam Patel said, “Yes, I got a call from the Prime Minister day before yesterday. He had called considering it his duty to inquire about the health of my family.”
“He also inquired about the situation in Surat and Gujarat in general. I told him that the manner in which the lockdown has been imposed, in a timely manner, is being appreciated across the world. People are also cooperating with the government,” said the Patidar leader who was a minister in the Gujarat government under Modi as the Chief Minister. He added that Modi has shared a close relationship with his family for a long time.
Another former minister in the Gujarat government, when Modi was the CM, Narayan Patel received a call from PM Modi. “I got a call from the PM four days back. He inquired about my health after a recent operation on one of my legs. He also inquired about the situation in the state due to the pandemic,” said the former Unjha MLA.
Narayan Patel is a five-time MLA from the seat which is considered a Patidar bastion in the state. Modi’s native, Vadnagar, falls under the Unjha assembly constituency.
In Saurashtra region, wife of late BJP veteran Suryakant Acharya, Hemaben Acharya also received a call from PM Modi. Hemaben has earlier served as a health minister in the Gujarat government and currently lives in Junagadh. She said, “When I heard that there was a call from the Prime Minister’s Office, I was surprised.”
“I felt very proud that I have a Prime Minister who remembers old fellows, even while holding such a busy office. He asked me to take care of my health, but I told him that he has to take care of his health more than me, as this country needs him.”
Dr AK Patel, one of the first two BJP MPs in the country, also received a call from the PM. Patel said, “He (Modi) generally stays in touch with us. He causally talked to me and inquired about my health and asked me to be careful. This shows that he remembers old friends and cares for them, even though he is very busy as the Prime Minister.”
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