"Bhopal rally was great in the country's political history", said senior BJP leader M Venkaiah Naidu, who added that he was overwhelmed by the response to the meetings of the party's Prime Ministerial candidate Narendra Modi in recent weeks, including at Hyderabad.
More than 5 lakh party workers participated, according to the Guinness Book
"Guinness Book of World Records officials were there. They were counting the numbers. There were more than five lakh party workers ('Karyakarta Mahamumbh' in Bhopal). It was not a public meeting. They (Guinness Book officials) said it's a world record (in terms of largest assembly of party workers)", Naidu told a press conference here.
Asked by a reporter if a former ally and a new one will join the NDA (referring to TDP and B S Yeddyurappa's Karnataka Janata Party), Naidu said: "There is (such) a possibility. Talks are in progress. I don't want to discuss it in the media".
"There will be realignment of political forces before and after the elections. It will happen in the South (India). It will happen in the country", Naidu said, indicating that his party is hoping to win more allies. On the party's move to charge Rs 10 entry fee for its workers attending the proposed rally of Modi in Karnataka (the date of which is yet to be finalised), he avoided a direct reply but noted that at Tiruchirapalli rally earlier this week it was indeed Rs 10.
"We will discuss it and consult you all", he said parrying the issue, which had become a topic of debate in some sections of the public. The state BJP, according to sources, has conveyed to the central leadership that it's not averse to Yeddyurappa, who had floated KJP in December last year, returning to the party-fold. Yeddyurappa has maintained that his party would ally with the NDA but would not merge with BJP, but some analysts have predicted that the political heavyweight's return to the BJP is not ruled out closer to the elections.