Prime Minister Narendra Modi is in Gujarat on a two-day visit that began yesterday. PM Modi will attend a raft of events and inaugurate a slew of schemes and projects on Monday. Modi is slated to inaugurate Kiran Multi Super Speciality Hospital and Research Centre, built by a private trust, in Surat this morning. “Tomorrow in Surat, will inaugurate a multi-speciality hospital at Katargam and a diamond manufacturing unit at Ichhapore,” PM Modi tweeted. PM Modi will “lay the foundation of various irrigation schemes & inaugurate a drinking water scheme that will benefit people living in Tapi district.” In Botad, PM Modi will dedicate to the “nation Phase 1 (Link-2) of SAUNI Yojana & lay foundation stone of Phase 2 (Link 2) of SAUNI Yojana.” “Tomorrow in Botad, will also witness the historic welcoming of the waters of the Narmada into the Krishna Sagar Lake,” PM Modi had written on the microblogging site. PM Modi will also visit Silvassa town in the Union Territory of Dadra and Nagar Haveli, where he will address a gathering apart from inaugurating a few projects. “In Dadra and Nagar Haveli, will inaugurate government projects & distribute sanction letters to beneficiaries of various Govt. initiatives,” PM Modi tweeted. In Bajipura, PM Modi will inaugurate SUMUL cattle field plant and lay foundation stone for other projects at SUMUL Dairy
Notably, in August last year, Modi inaugurated the first phase of ambitious Saurashtra Narmada Avtaran Irrigation (Sauni) Project from Jamnagar. Under this project, which is divided in four phases, the Gujarat government plans to fill 115 dams of Saurashtra region with overflowing water of Sardar Sarovar Dam across river Narmada through a web of pipeline network.
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Gratitude to all those who joined. Today was memorable! pic.twitter.com/HYp2dM361G
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) April 16, 2017
This is Modi’s second visit to his home state this year. He had visited Gandhinagar on March 8 to address women sarpanchs from across the country on International Women’s Day.
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Tomorrow in Botad, will also witness the historic welcoming of the waters of the Narmada into the Krishna Sagar Lake.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) April 16, 2017
Yesterday, PM Modi had virtually sounded the poll bugle in Gujara, by leading a 11 km roadshow in Surat, a Patel community stronghold, where he was accorded a rousing reception. The roadshow, which had begun from the airport around 7.25 PM and ended at 9.25 PM at the Circuit House, was a mega outreach by Modi in the election year after the BJP decided to project him as the face of 2017 state Assembly polls, which will be a battle of prestige for the Prime Minister in his home state.
This was Modi’s first visit to Surat, the hub of Patidar agitation for reservation in government jobs and educational institutions, after assuming the office in 2014. A large number of people, waving the tricolour, and chanting “Modi! Modi!” and “Bharat Mata Ki Jai”, stood along the road illuminated with lights of different colours as the Prime Minister acknowledged greetings from the cheering crowd by waving to them while standing through the open sunroof of an SUV for almost two hours.
On his arrival at the Surat airport last evening, Modi was greeted by Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani, Deputy CM Nitin Patel and state BJP chief Jitu Vaghani before he embarked on the roadshow to the Circuit House in Athwalines area, where he will stay overnight.
As Modi came to his home state for the first time after the BJP’s resounding victories in Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand, the state party unit made every effort to welcome him in grand style in Surat, which has a sizable population of Patels and had witnessed large-scale violence during the quota agitation in 2015.
During the roadshow, the PM was welcomed by various community organisations, youths and women at welcome points set up every 200 meters along the route. Apart from the 3D laser shows at regular intervals and colourful LED light decoration, an 11 km-long saree with names of various government schemes printed on it was also tied along the route.
Large hoardings welcoming Modi were put up at major spots by local party leaders. City residents had started thronging the route since afternoon to have a glimpse of Modi and to capture his image on their cell phones.
People belonging to different communities, including Punjabis, Tamils and Marathis, welcomed the PM by turning out in their traditional attire. Shops, hospitals, schools and other residential and commercial premises along the route were illuminated.
A 1008 metre-long welcome banner signed by over one lakh people was also on display. Modi’s convoy was led by 50,000 youths, including women, on 25,000 bikes. A 22-feet tall cutout of Modi was also installed near the airport. At several places sand sculptures were created on the pet themes of the Modi government about saving the girl child, their education, digital India and other initiatives. After the roadshow, Modi held a meeting with senior state BJP leaders at the Circuit House.
(With agency inputs)