Bengaluru, Mar 16: Arvind Kejriwal may have later turned to be the king of Delhi after assembly elections.
But for Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Kejriwal was just a small single city leader, not even worth ignoring.
These comments on Kejriwal were made by Modi to former BBC journalist Lance Price in July, 2014, during the campaign for the Lok Sabha elections.
Price recounts Modi's response in his new book "The Modi Effect: Inside Narendra Modi's Campaign to Transform India".
Price's book also says that Modi decided to keep mum when Arvind Kejriwal decided to contest against him in Varanasi in the last Lok Sabha polls.
When asked about contest between him and Kejriwal for the Varanasi Lok Sabha seat, Modi said to Price,"My silence is my strength..Kejriwal was nothing but a small single city leader. He was getting far more coverage than he deserves. So why spend time even ignoring someone. It was, therefore, not even worth my time to ignore Kejriwal."
Modi was also quoted saying that Kejriwal was elevated by select group of vested media interests fuelled by the Congress to target him and try and save the Congress. Kejriwal was not even a Member of Parliament; had only lasted for 49 days as CM and had won less than one per cent of the national vote.
Contrary to which, Modi during Delhi assembly election campaign made some scathing attacks against Arvind Kejriwal calling him an "anarchist" who should go to "jungles to join Naxals".
Responding to the remarks on Kejriwal, Political analysts were of the opinion that Modi went too far in attacking Kejriwal, and gave him the 'chai wala' moment, and gave the party impetus to take the campaign to an another level.