Modi's roadshow draws enthusiastic crowds, first by a PM in Bihar's capital

CM Nitish standing beside Modi on a motor-driven chariot was seen slowly waving a small cutout of the BJP symbol—Lotus.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and BJP candidate from Patna Sahib constituency Ravi Shankar Prasad during an election campaign roadshow for the Lok Sabha polls, in Patna, Sunday, May 12,
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and BJP candidate from Patna Sahib constituency Ravi Shankar Prasad during an election campaign roadshow for the Lok Sabha polls, in Patna, Sunday, May 12, PTI

PATNA: A day before fourth phase of Lok Sabha election, Prime Minister Narendra Modi conducted a roadshow in Bihar’s capital on Sunday to garner support for the national democratic alliance (NDA) candidate and former union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad from the Patna Sahib Lok Sabha constituency.

Modi was accompanied by Bihar CM Nitish Kumar and BJP nominee Ravishankar Prasad, proceeded on a well-decorated chariot from Bhattacharya Road. A huge crowd on both flanks of the road welcomed PM Modi who greeted them by waving his hands.

Surprisingly, Nitish standing beside Modi on the motor-driven chariot was seen slowly waving a small cutout of the BJP symbol—Lotus. Nitish, whom Modi had earlier described as a ‘true’ socialist, however, looked tired ostensibly due to hectic election meetings and rallies earlier in the day.

Bihar Deputy CM and BJP state president Samrat Choudhary was also seen on the chariot.

“Modi is perhaps the first PM to hold a roadshow in Patna. He has created a history of sort by doing so. We have seen him from close distance for the first time,” said Nilesh Sinha, a resident of Kadamkuan locality of the capital.

As the roadshow progressed towards Thakurwadi road, anticipation grew among the crowd, with women, youth, and children eager to catch a glimpse of the PM. Security personnel became more vigilant, and the chariot continued its journey amidst the waiting crowd.

Kumharar, previously known as the Patna central assembly constituency, is considered a BJP stronghold, represented by MLA Arun Kumar Sinha. A 90-year-old woman, who introduced herself as Sunita Devi, a retired schoolteacher, said, “I am a big fan of Modi ji. Though I have been a BJP sympathiser since long, I personally like Modi for having clean image and a different view on ‘nationalism’.

Among the diverse crowd gathered to see the PM there were Muslim women,“I have come to see Modi out of curiosity. It has nothing to do with election. He is the Prime Minister and has come to hold roadshow for the first time, so I decided to see him,” said Nashima Khatoon, 52, a resident of Sultanganj in Patna City.

The roadshow will culminate at Udyog Bhawan on eastern side of the Gandhi Maidan, only a few yards away from the site where serial bomb explosions took place while Modi was addressing an election rally on October 27, 2013. The bombs were allegedly planted by operatives of Indian Mujahideen, a terrorist outfit operating in the country.

BJP candidate Ravishankar Prasad is pitted against Anshul Abhijit of Congress in Patna Sahib Lok Sabha seat. Anshul, son of former Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar, is contesting Lok Sabha election for the first time.

Ahead of Modi’s roadshow, RJD chief Lalu Prasad took to ‘X’ to say “What benefit Bihar is going to gain if PM moves through roads and streets. People of Bihar are not fools and they know that all investments have been made in Gujarat instead of Bihar even as 39 out of 40 Lok Sabha seats arefrom the state. After three phases, PM is forced to stage a roadshow while in remaining four phases, he will have to make a lot of trips.”

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and BJP candidate from Patna Sahib constituency Ravi Shankar Prasad during an election campaign roadshow for the Lok Sabha polls, in Patna, Sunday, May 12,
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