Love him or hate him but you definitely can’t ignore him. That is Narendra Modi!

2014 elections are definitely going to be interesting. Today, when he spoke at the FICCI Ladies Organisation, this was no ‘knight in shining armour’, but a seasoned politician, who knew how to connect with his audience.

Yes, it is unfair to compare Rahul Gandhi with him. While one is still taking baby steps, the other has now spent a lifetime.

Upfront, honest and ready with an answer he was. But, he also was politically correct. There was no mention of ‘beehive’ in his speech. The focus remained the role of women and how they are empowered in his State. Jasu Ben’s Pizza got a special mention, followed by Lijjat Pappad and Indu Ben’s Khakra business.

But, he was quick to take a dig at the media when he said: “Now media will go and search for Jassu Ben like they did for Kalawati. I will inform she passed away in Pune a few years ago."

Kalawati was made famous by Gandhi when he mentioned her in Parliament.

Modi’s connect with the new generation was evident when he said he could be reached through social media – Twitter and Facebook. The maturity with which he touched upon the issues of female foeticide or waiver of stamp duty if the land is registered in the name of women, touched the right chords.

Talk about professionalism: Narendra Modi or the Gujarat Government has no role to play in the success of these women entrepreneurs. They are facilitators at best. Allow women to handle CSR spending in the companies – and they will do an excellent job, because they have compassion.

The politician in him was at his best during the question and answer session. Asked about his weakness, he said, nobody is perfect, each one has some deficiencies. “I have every human fault, but my values have taught me to play to my strengths…” We get your point Mr Modi!

But, no speech can end without taking a dig at Congress, can it? Says Modi there is a lot to be done in Gujarat even today. “We have just filled the holes left by the Congress Government in Gujarat.”

If Modi comes to Centre, his take on women’s reservation Bill…ah ha! If you thought he was caught here, well – his response “I can do things only in Gujarat. I brought a Bill that gave 50 per cent reservation to women in panchayats and civic bodies, but sadly it was not passed. It was stopped by the Gujarat Governor, who is incidentally a woman.”

We definitely have a leader in place!

While Rahul baba is sweet in his own way, Modi baba is subtle and arrogant in his own way.

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