Varanasi, Apr 26, 2019 : A day after his massive roadshow in Varanasi on Thursday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will today file his nomination papers in the temple town from where he is seeking re-election, NDTV reported.
Today’s event is expected to be a show of strength of the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA), with top BJP leaders and allies accompanying him. Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, Shiromani Akali Dal chief Parkash Singh Badal, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray and Lok Janshakti Party chief Ram Vilas Paswan are expected to be present when the Prime Minister files his nomination, the BJP had said.
Leaders of the AIADMK, the Apna Dal and the North-East Democratic Alliance will also be present, the BJP said.
The Prime Minister will first address a gathering of BJP workers before visiting the famous Kal Bhairav temple in the city.
He will then visit the city’s collectorate to file his nomination papers.
On Thursday, PM Modi began his 7-km roadshow by garlanding the statue of Madan Mohan Malviya at the iconic Banaras Hindu University.
The Prime Minister waved at thousands of people on the roads from the sunroof of his SUV as he took his roadshow by ancient temples and ghats. The roadshow, that lasted for two-and-a-half hours ended in the holiest ghat of them all, the Dashashwamedh. The prime minister also attended the evening aarti at this ghat on the banks of the river Ganga.
Speaking after the roadshow, the PM stressed on national security, saying the government had dealt effectively against terrorism. In an apparent reference to the Balakot air strike after Pakistan-based terrorists killed over 40 CRPF soldiers in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama in February, PM Modi said the world now backed India in its fight against terror.
Facing PM Modi in Varanasi will be Ajay Rai of the Congress, who finished third in 2014. The Samajwadi Party and Mayawati’s Bahujan Samaj Party are fielding Shalini Yadav, the daughter-in-law of a former Congress lawmaker,as as the grand alliance candidate from Varanasi.
PM Modi had won from Varanasi by a huge margin, winning 5.8 lakh votes. The Aam Aadmi Party’s Arvind Kejriwal came second with around two lakh votes. Ajay Rai was left with a mere 75,000 votes.
Varanasi votes on May 19 in the last round of the seven-phase national election. The counting of votes will take place on May 23.