Lakhs throng to have a glance of Modi during roadshow in Kashi

| | Varanasi
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Lakhs throng to have a glance of Modi during roadshow in Kashi

Tuesday, 14 May 2024 | Ramesh K Singh | Varanasi

The ancient holy city of Kashi witnessed a sea of crowds on the five-kilometre-long route from Malviya statue near Banaras Hindu University main gate (Lanka) to Shri Kashi Vishwanath Dham, parallel to river Ganga, during the roadshow of Prime Minister Narendra Modi here on Monday evening, a day prior to his nomination from Varanasi Lok Sabha constituency, seeking a hat-trick of victories as a Bharatiya Janata Party candidate.

Modi reached Malviya statue around 5 pm as his helicopter landed at the BHU helipad. Attired in saffron kurta and a white half jacket, Modi paid floral tributes with folded hands to BHU founder Bharat Ratna Mahamana Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya and then, responding to the cheers of followers present in thousands, he along with UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and BJP state president Bhupendra Chaudhary took out his roadshow almost from the same route as it was taken out in 2019, the only difference being the culminating point as this time he went straight to Shri Kashi Vishwanath Dham to offer prayers whereas five years ago, Modi had turned right from Godowlia crossing to Dashashwamedh Ghat for Ganga aarti.

The roadshow was a reflection of unity in diversity as Banarasis from various regions welcomed the prime minister by presenting their traditional folk dances, wearing traditional costumes. For more than a century, thousands of families of Tamils, Gujaratis, Marathis, Bengalis, Marwaris, Sindhis, Punjabis, Khatris, Biharis, Nepalese and others are living here and most of them have their separate localities located close to the river Ganga. Realising the attachment of the local people with the river Ganga, when in 2014 Modi began his parliamentary innings from Varanasi he had said ‘Maa Ganga ne bulaya hai’.

Passing through the densely-populated localities like Saint Ravidas Gate, Assi, Shivala, Sonarpura, Pandey Haveli, Madanpura, Jangambadi, Godowlia and Bansphatak of this ancient city, Modi reached Kashi Vishwanath temple amidst the sound of shehnai, conch shell, drums, damru and many other traditional musical instruments as the people crowded on roadsides and rooftops showered flowers and welcomed him with the slogans of ‘Har Har Mahadev’, ‘Har Har Modi, Ghar Ghar Modi’. At about 100 places, the artistes of different regions presented their folk musical shows to welcome Modi.

Throughout the route there was not an inch of space left and due to the heavy rush. It was a tough time for the security personnel to control the crowds despite elaborate arrangements and barricading on roadsides.

On the route, the reflection of the rich cultural heritage was also seen apart from the hoardings of great local personalities. The entire route was flooded with saffron flags. The atmosphere was festive, showing the unmatched popularity of Modi in his parliamentary constituency. 

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