New Delhi: Amid speculations that he could be the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) prime ministerial candidate in the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections, Union Minister Nitin Gadkari on Sunday reiterated that he was not in the race. “I have not done any calculation, never set targets — neither in politics nor in work. Mai to chala jidhar chale rasta (I follow the path wherever it leads). Jo kaam dikha karta gaya (Accomplished whatever is assigned to me). Believe in doing the best for the country,” Gadkari told news agency PTI in an interview.

Clarifying further, the Union Minister and former BJP chief said,”Neither there is anything like this in my mind nor RSS has any such thing. Nation comes supreme for us. I do not see dreams, neither I go to anyone nor I do any lobbying. I am not in this race and am telling you from my heart.”

Showering praise on PM Modi, Gadkari asserted that the entire BJP and he himself standing solidly behind the Prime Minister ‘who is doing very good work’. “Given what work we have done, I feel we will get more seats than the last time under Modiji,” he said and termed the ‘Mahagathbandhan’ (grand alliance) of Opposition parties for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls as ‘Mahamilawat’ (high adulteration). He exuded confidence that BJP was going to get a thumping majority and increase its seats tally in the upcoming general elections.

Earlier, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis at an award ceremony had also stated that the prime minister’s post has been booked for the next two general elections. When actor Riteish Deshmukh asked who from Maharashtra, including Sharad Pawar and Nitin Gadkari, can become the prime minister, Fadnavis said, “Let me tell you, this question does not arise, because the post for prime minister has already been booked… Not only for this year’s election, but also for the 2024 polls.”