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HindustanTimes Thu,28 Aug 2014

Modi's Delhi rally: 2,000 Muslims to be seated near stage

Faizan Haidar, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, September 29, 2013
First Published: 02:24 IST(29/9/2013) | Last Updated: 02:27 IST(29/9/2013)

At least 2,000-odd Muslims – donning burqas and skull caps – have been asked to sit together near the stage at the Japanese Park from where Narendra Modi will address his maiden rally in Delhi.

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The BJP has been trying everything to project support to its Prime Ministerial candidate from all sections of society, especially Muslims.

At a recent rally in Bhopal, the party reportedly distributed skull caps and burqas to show support from Muslims prominently.

“We are expecting at least 20,000 Muslims but most of them are coming from far off areas such as Okhla, Seelampur, Shahdara and Mustafabad. They all will reach on different times but we want them to sit at one place when Modiji addresses the rally. Though there is no separate enclosure for Muslims, we have made arrangements so that they can sit together, near the stage,” said a senior BJP leader.

Sources said that nearly 2,000 Muslims from Bawana are expected to come and since they will take just 15 minutes to reach, they have been asked to come by 9.30am. “The journey for others is about more than an hour. There will be a delay so we have posted volunteers to guide them. Once people from Bawana take their seats, we will ask our volunteers to take other Muslims to that area,” the leader added.

The minority cell of BJP has arranged 340 buses and claim Muslims from across the city will attend the rally. It also clarified that no one will be forced to wear a burqa or a skull cap. “We will identify a gate and for smooth access our volunteers will take the visitors to the enclosure as they arrive. We are confident that over 20,000 Muslims will attend the rally,” said Atif Rasheed, president of BJP’s minorities cell.

The party also conducted a meeting with MNC professionals, opinion makers and young voters. “We spoke to over 60 professionals from different fields and asked them to bring young professionals to the rally. We are expecting youth from different fields such as software engineers, BPO executives, from finance sector and bloggers,” said a BJP leader.


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