KHARAGPUR: Reaching out to Muslims in poll-bound West Bengal, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today paused for several minutes in the middle of his speech at a poll rally here as a muezzin called for prayers at a nearby mosque.
Modi, who had launched into a tirade against the ruling Trinamool Congress and the CPI(M)-Congress alliance, was in full flow when he abruptly stopped his speech as the muezzin made the call for prayer.
The rally was being held at BNR maidan here, which is located behind the Golbari Masjid.
"This is our parampara (heritage). We should pay respect to all religions and respect their rituals and customs.
"We should be respectful so that the unity of India is maintained," Modi said after the muezzin's call for evening prayers had ended.
The prime minister then spoke for about 20 minutes more at the rally, which saw a huge turnout.
Four worshippers, who identified themselves as Aftab and Sheikh Firdaus from Kharagpur town and Imtiaz Ali and Amir Khan from Midnapore town were all praise for Modi for "respecting" all religions.