Both Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress president Rahul Gandhi will address rallies in the region on Saturday, scheduled within an hour of each other at their respective venues that are just about 30 kilometres apart.
Of the six Lok Sabha seats Seemanchal and Kosi regions, Purnia, Kishanganj and Katihar went to polls on April 18 while the rest three, Araria, Supaul and Madhepura, are going to polls in the third phase on April 23.
The prime minister will address rally at Forbesganj, which is part of the Araria Lok Sabha constituency from where the BJP has fielded former MP Pradeep Kumar Singh, who is pitted against sitting RJD MP Sarfaraz Alam, son of former RJD MP (late) Md Taslimuddin, known as the Seemanchal strongman. Sarfaraz Alam had won the seat in the bypoll in 2018 necessitated by his sitting MP Taslimuddin’s death.
BJP has fielded its candidate only in Araria, leaving the rest five to ally JD-U. The party has won this seat thrice, in 1998, 2004 and 2009. RJD won in 1999 and 2014.
The PM’s rally in Araria is expected to draw supporters from adjoining Supaul and Madhepura too. “Over one lakh BJP workers from Supaul, Madhepura and Araria are expected to participate in the rally at Hawai Adda Ground at Forbesganj,” said Araria BJP spokesperson Raja Mishra.
The PM will land at Chunapur Air Force Station and later leave for Forbesganj by helicopter to address his first election meeting in Seemanchal in 2019. His scheduled arrival at the venue is 10 am.
“Modiji had come here in 2014, but we had disappointed him. not this time,” said BJP MLC Dilip Jaiswal, who has been camping in Araria.
Despite the Modi wave in 2014, BJP had failed to win any seat in the region.
With PM’s rally in Araria, the BJP also intends to energise party workers and supporters in adjoining Supaul and Madhepura, where ally JD(U) has fielded candidates.
Rahul Gandhi will address a rally in Supaul in support of Congress nominee Ranjeet Ranjan, who has not been getting much support from ally RJD.
His scheduled arrival at the venue is 11 am.
Rahul has already addressed three election rallies so far in Bihar, first in Purnea, second in Gaya and the third in Katihar.
Apr 20, 2019 01:46 IST
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