‘Not an intelligent person, but…’: Nitin Gadkari speaks about choice of his next portfolio if BJP returns to power

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Nitin Gadkari is one of the most popular cabinet ministers from the outgoing Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government. Ahead of the Lok Sabha elections 2024, Nitin Gadkari spoke to Hindustan Times about his stint as the Union Minister and responded to fears that the BJP could change the Constitution after the next general elections. Nitin Gadkari is looking for third Lok Sabha term from Nagpur and is pitted against Congress’ Vikas Thakre.

“I am not a career politician, but rather a social worker. I believe politics is the instrument of social and economic reform. Politics consists of 80% of social work and 20% of politics. I am doing social work, particularly in agriculture, water conservation, and biofuels. I am just a mediocre person, not a highly qualified one. I am not so intelligent…but have been conferred six D Lits from different universities. I have received respect and love from all sections of people who appreciate my work as a minister. It is beyond my imagination. I still feel that I do not in fact deserve what I have got. It is the sheer love of the people. I know my limitations,” Nitin Gadkari said in the interview.

Nitin Gadkari responded to the fears that the BJP is planning to change the Constitution after winning the Lok Sabha elections 2024 and said that the Opposition is trying to terrorize people by spreading lies. “The Constitution’s salient features and basic structure cannot be changed. In the Kesavananda Bharati case, the Supreme Court said no part of the Constitution, including fundamental rights, was beyond the Parliament’s amending power but the basic structure cannot be changed…By pushing such a false narrative, the opposition is trying to mislead minorities, Dalits, etc to get votes. They would not succeed in such misleading campaigns,” the minister said.

Choice of the next portfolio

While speaking about his choice for the next portfolio if the BJP returns to power, Nitin Gadkari said that he doesn’t think about tomorrow and is a committed Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh volunteer, a BJP and social worker. “This is my identity. You may be an ex-chief minister, ex-minister, or ex-member of Parliament but a party worker will always remain one. I am content with whatever I am. I am a committed BJP worker with conviction, not a politician by calculation. I believe in Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas [equal development]. Under Modi, the NDA government is doing a commendable job. I am confident we will again form the government for the third time. I will be comfortable with whatever responsibility is entrusted to me,” he said.

On Rahul Gandhi’s two Bharat Jodo Yatras, Nitin Gadkari said that he doesn’t see Congress benefitting from them. “The Congress is synonymous with corruption and scandals. The BJP epitomizes development, administration, and good governance. The Congress will not be able to increase its seat tally,” Nitin Gadkari said.


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Published: 15 Apr 2024, 04:42 PM IST

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