RAE BARELI: In the wake of drubbing faced by the BJP in state Assembly polls on December 11, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set to launch his aggressive election campaign for 2019 in Uttar Pradesh from Rae Bareli, the parliamentary constituency of UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi on Sunday.
Though the PM's visit will be to flag off the 900 newly-built coaches at Modern Rail Coach Factory at Lalganj in the district, senior BJP leaders, monitoring the preparation work on ground said that the "official trip" to the eastern UP city, will be a clear message to party workers for an intense electoral campaign during the Lok Sabha polls.
After Rae Bareli, the Prime Minister will visit Prayagraj (Allahabad) on the same day for monitoring the Kumbh preparations and will address a public meeting in Jhunsi area. Later, on December 29, Mr Modi will also be visiting his constituency of Varanasi and address a rally in the eastern UP town of Ghajipur.
While in Rae Bareli, Mr Modi will inaugurate and lay foundation of projects worth Rs 1100 crore which include the inauguration of a four-lane Rae Bareli-Banda highway, in Prayagraj, he will launch projects worth around Rs 3000 crore in the city and at the Kumbh Mela area.
Uttar Pradesh Civil Aviation and Registration Minister and minister in-charge of Rae Bareli Nand Gopal Gupta Nandi told UNI here on Saturday that PM, during his brief visit, will address a public meeting in Rae Bareli.
He said over 3 lakh people are expected to attend the PM's rally, to be held at the rail coach factory premises, in Rae Bareli for which preparation has already completed.
Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, who will accompany Mr Modi at North places in Rae Bareli and Prayagraj, had on December 13 inspected the spots at the rail coach factory here and instructed the authorities about several arrangements to be made during the Prime Minister's visit.
Having faced an aggressive resurgent by Congress in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chattisgarh, BJP leadership realised that 'Road to 2019' is not easy.
Party will also be faced with a formidable challenge in UP, as BSP and SP look all set for an electoral alliance.
Against this backdrop, BJP's top leadership, especially party president Amit Shah and PM Modi, probably want to keep the cadre high in spirit, and the Rae Bareli visit fits right into that perspective.
Thus, giving out a message that party is neither on the defensive nor lacking in aggression. BJP spokesperson Chandra Mohan, however, said, "No constituency or area is anyone's personal fiefdom. Rae Bareli and Amethi had lacked on development for decades.
" He further said, "Prime Minister's visit to the town is in tune to our promise of bringing development back to this region," Sources said PM Modi will also talk about the corruption charges against the Gandhi family in his public address, the glimpses of which we had seen during his speeches for Vidhan Sabha elections recently.
Early next year in January, PM Modi will attend the Pravasi Bharatiya Diwas in Varanasi and visit Kumbh as a devotee.
In view of the PM's visit to Rae Bareli on December 16, heavy security arrangements are being put in place. Sources said that security officials, including 16 SPs, 25 Additional Superintendent of Police, 50 police DSP(s) will be deployed in huge numbers as part of the elaborate security arrangements.
Apart from this, 12 companies of PAC and six fire tenders will also be put in place to deal with any untoward incident. Snipers will also be present in high-rise buildings, whereas drones and CCTV cameras will be used for surveillance.