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The extended family of Narendra Modi, the current Prime Minister of India, is notable for the remarkably humble and modest status, quite unlike the family of most influential politicians.[1] That is in spite of the fact that Narendra Modi has served an unusually long tenure (7 October 2001 – 22 May 2014) as a Chief Minister of Gujarat, rarely matched in India's political history. It is also notable for the fact that Narendra Modi has deliberately maintained no contact with them. Narendra Modi visits his own mother only once a year on his birthday and on ceremonial occasions.[2]

Narendra Modi left his home as a parivrajak at age 16 in 1967[3][4] and severed all contacts with his extended family, including his childhood wife. While he later gave up the garb of a monk, he never reestablished formal connections with this former family once he left to a Sangh pracharak. Narendra Modi is always invited to marriages that have taken place in the families of his brothers and sisters, however he never attends.[5] His family has accepted his sanyasi-like detachement[6]

Narendra Modi does not identify anyone as immediate family. He specifically stated “I cannot be dishonest. I don’t have [a] family to look after.” [7]

One of his brothers had once approached him to get a job for daughter who had completed B.A. B.Ed. Narendra Modi not only declined to help, he bluntly told him not to make any request in future. Another brother when he got transferred to rural area approached Narendra Modi to get the transfer stopped. Narendra Modi just simply told him to follow the rules if he wants to do the government job.

Modi's family members went to pilgrimages to seek divine blessings for Narendra Modi's success. Pankaj Modi had organised a 'Vishnu Yajna' at Badrinath Dham.[8] They had also occasionally campaigned for him.[9][10][11]

Narendra Modi's family was notably absent from his inauguration ceremony. They were not invited.

Family tree

First generation

File:Narendra Modi seeks his mother's blessings on his birthday on 17th sept.jpg

Narendra Modi's family hails from the historic Vadnagar town in Gujarat. They belong to the Modh-Ghanchi community. Narendra Modi's childhood home has been sold by the family, but the neighbors still remember them.[12]

  • Damodardas Mulchand Modi (-1989), the father of Narendra Modi.[13] He ran grain grinding business[14] for some then and then ran a canteen at the Vadnagar Railway Station for almost 40 years, where Narendra Modi himself occasional served tea to the customers.[15]. Narendra Modi's background as a humble tea server was ridiculed by Mani Shankar Aiyar, which in turn was widely used by BJP.[16]
  • Hira Ba (95) (or Hira Ben, Ba = mother in Gujarari, Ben = Sister)), the mother of Narendra Modi. After her husband died, she used the serve as a utensil clear in the neighborhood to earn money.[17] She used to stay alone at the original family residence at Vadnagar. Later owing to declining health, she moved to the government provided residance of her youngest son Pankaj Bhai Modi and lives in a tiny room.

Second generation

  • Oldest brother Somabhai Damodardas Modi (68): Narendra Modi’s eldest brother Somabhai Damodar Das Modi was an employee with health department of Gujarat government. Now retired, he runs an old age home in Vadnagar. he is the only reliming family member now at Vadnagar.
  • Second brother Amritbhai Damodardas Modi (65) works as a lathe machine operator in Ahmedabad.
  • Narendra Modi himself is the third child.
  • Third brother: Prahladbhai Damodardas Modi (52) is the president of Gujarat Fair Price Shop License Holder Association and the vice-president of its national chapter in Ahmedabad.[18] He briefly had to fight the Gujarat Government to save his business, even though his brother was the chief minister.
  • Fourth Brother Pankajbhai Damodardas Modi is a government employee. Pankaj takes a local bus to office spending four hours everyday, as he does does not even own a scooter.
  • Sister Vasantiben (57) married to Hasmukhbhai Modi, who used to work for Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) of India in Visnagar.

Modi's Childhood Wife

Narendra Modi's estranged childhood wife Jashodaben Chimanlal Modi lives in Rajosana village, Gujarat.[19]. She still regards herself as his wife.[20] She undertook pilgrimage to seek divine blessings for Narendra Modi's electoral success[21] and to seek him a long life.[22]

Criticism and Defense

Narendra Modi encountered significant criticism when he acknowledged Jasodaben as his wife.[23] He was defended by his family members and supporters. Prahlad Modi pointed out that Lord Buddha too, after his marriage, had left his wife and child, [24][25]

See also

References

  1. In India, a Political Dynasty Prospers in Power,NIHARIKA MANDHANA, Wall Street Journal, May 12, 2014
  2. 64માં જન્મદિવસે નરેન્દ્ર મોદીએ માતા હીરાબાના આશીર્વાદ લીધા, 17 Sept. 2013
  3. एक कर्मक्रांत परिव्राजक एवं इक्कीसवीं सदी का आर्ष योद्धा, 26 May, 2014
  4. He was fearless as a child, but he never looked back at his family: Narendra Modi brother SomabhaiLakshmi Ajay , RituSharma, Indian Express, Dec 04 2012
  5. Have nothing to say, says Modi's familySatish Jha , RituSharma : Ahmedabad, Fri Sep 13 2013
  6. Modi must not mention mother's auto ride, sons have the right but sanyasis do not, Akash Deep Ashok New Delhi, May 6, 2014
  7. [http://www.ibtimes.com/india-2014-elections-bizarre-mystery-surrounding-narendra-modis-alleged-wife-1561855 India 2014 Elections: The Bizarre Mystery Surrounding Narendra Modi's Alleged 'Wife', Palash Ghosh, March 17 2014]
  8. Yajna at Badrinath Dham to make Modi Prime Minister, SMA Kazmi, Tribune News Service, September 1, 2012
  9. [http://www.tribuneindia.com/2013/20130921/nation.htm#12 Modi rose to top the hard way: Brother Rajmeet Singh/TNS, September 20, 2013]
  10. [http://indiatoday.intoday.in/story/narendra-modi-gets-brothers-boost-for-pm-bid/1/345066.html Narendra Modi gets elder brother's backing for PM bid, Mail Today Bureau, February 23, 2014]
  11. Modi's brother seeking youth's support in Haryana, Siddhartha Rai, Hindustan Times Gurgaon, February 25, 2014
  12. Vadnagar diaries, Sohini Das, Business Standard, May 31, 2014
  13. [http://www.indiatvnews.com/politics/national/at-a-glance-narendra-modi-s-family-members-13139.html At a glance: Narendra Modi's family members, India TV Politics Desk [ Updated 10 Jun 2014]
  14. [http://www.bombaysamachar.com/frmStoryShow.aspx?sNo=73586 નાટક, વડનગર અને ન.મો. વતન નગરમાં કિશોર વયે નરેન્દ્ર મોદીએ નાટકોમાં અભિનય કરેલો અને વિવિધ વિધેયાત્મક પ્રવૃત્તિમાં હિસ્સો પણ લીધેલો, 18-June-2014]
  15. Gujarat was too small for Narendra Modi, says his elder brother Somabhai, FPJ Bureau, May 25, 2014
  16. Chai pe charcha, A SRINIVAS
  17. After big win Narendra Modi's family members exclusive on India News, 5:43, "when my mother used to serve as a maid in the neighborhood"
  18. Brother says Modi has no time for his ‘fair’ demandExpress News Service : Ahmedabad, Sun Sep 18 2011
  19. I am Narendra Modi’s Wife”, 11 April 2009
  20. હું બેહદ ખુશ છું કે મોદીએ મને પત્ની તરીકે સ્વીકારીઃ જશોદાબેન, Chitralekha, 24/05/2014
  21. Jashodaben on pilgrimage, ‘prays for Narendra Modi’s success’ April 11, 2014
  22. જશોદાબેન માં બહુચરના શરણે, પતિના દીર્ઘાયુષ્ય માટે કરી પ્રાર્થના, Bhaskar News, Bahucharaji|Jun 14, 2014,
  23. AAP, Congress to move EC seeking Narendra Modi's disqualification over marital status row, Darshan Desai, Mail Today, April 11, 2014
  24. Narendra Modi's younger brother Prahlad Modi defends him on wife issue, 21 April 2014
  25. Buddha too was criticized by Confucians for having left his family, see A BUDDHIST-CONFUCIAN CONTROVERSY ON FILIAL PIETY, GUANG XING, Journal of Chinese Philosophy, 3 MAY 2010, DOI: 10.1111/j.1540-6253.2010.01582.x

External links

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