‘Show of strength’: PM Modi’s roadshow in Varanasi today, to file nomination on April 26


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New Delhi:

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will hold a roadshow and take part in the Ganga ‘aarti’ on Thursday, a day before he files his nomination papers from this Uttar Pradesh constituency, according to a party functionary.

The nomination on Friday will also see a show of strength with several BJP allies, including Shiv Sena's Uddhav Thackeray and Janata Dal-United's Nitish Kumar, expected to accompany PM Modi when he files the papers.

The road show will begin at around 3 pm after the prime minister garlands the statue of Banaras Hindu University founder Madan Mohan Malaviya, according to the schedule available now.

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The procession will end at about 7 pm at the Dashashwamedh Ghat, the most prominent of Varanasi's ghats, where PM Modi will take part in the evening prayers.

On Friday, the prime minister will hold a meeting at 9 am with Bharatiya Janata Party workers at a hotel in the cantonment area.

He will then offer prayers at the Kaal Bhairav temple before leaving for the collectorate to file his papers, seeking re-election from the Lok Sabha seat.

Senior leaders from the BJP and other parties in the National Democratic Alliance will accompany PM Modi to the collectorate.

Among the allies attending the event are Bihar chief minister and JDU chief Nitish Kumar, Shiromani Akali Dal leader and former Punjab CM Parkash Singh Badal, Lok Janshakti Party leader Ram Vilas Paswan and Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray.

Union ministers Sushma Swaraj, Piyush Goyal, J P Nadda and Nitin Gadkari are also likely to attend, party leaders said.

In 2014, PM Modi won the seat by a margin of over three lakh votes against Aam Aadmi Party leader Arvind Kejriwal.

This time there is speculation that the Congress may field its general secretary Priyanka Gandhi against him.

According to sources, Priyanka may file her nomination papers from Varanasi on April 29. The Congress General Secretary is also expected to visit the Kaal Bhairav Mandir ahead of filing her nomination.

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