KOZHIKODE: Over 1.5 lakh party workers and supporters, including a large number of women, from Kozhikode, Malappuram and Vadakara constituencies turned out to hear Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressing the ‘Vijay Sankalp rally’ on Kozhikode beach on Friday.
Braving the scorching heat, a majority of them, donning masks of their leader, saffron caps, chowkidar T-shirts and carrying party flags, had gathered at the venue hours before the Prime Minister’s arrival. The crowd welcomed the Prime Minister, who arrived at the venue around 7.15 pm, by turning on their mobile phone lights. The PM started his speech by greeting the crowd in Malayalam. The crowd couldn’t contain their excitement and enthusiasm on seeing the Prime Minister and shouted slogans throughout his speech. He signed off wishing the people a happy Vishu and Easter.
NDA candidates from Kasargod to Palakkad and senior BJP leaders PS Sreedharan Pillai, PK Krishnadas, MT Ramesh, V Muraleedharan, among others shared the dais with the Prime Minister. District-level party leaders had started engaging the crowd through speeches around 5.30 pm. The crowd was seen shouting slogans hailing Prime Minister Narendra Modi, especially when senior party leaders and NDA candidates in the seven constituencies in north Kerala, recounted the Modi government’s achievements in the past five years.
Former Congress leader PC George, who joined the BJP-led NDA two days ago, drew the loudest cheers from the crowd. His typical one-liners, including those against Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, brought waves of laughter from the crowd. Declaring his support for all NDA candidates in the state, George said he was “100 per cent sure” the BJP will win seats in Pathanamthitta and Thiruvananthapuram. He also said he will hold a road show at Thiruvananthapuram in support of the NDA candidate there on April 20. The slogan-shouting crowd was also all praise for Tushar Vellapally, the NDA candidate in Wayanad, CK Padmanabhan (NDA candidate in Kannur) and K P Prakash Babu (NDA candidate in Kozhikode).