MP: Rally ground dampens Modi supporters

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Jhotrada (Alirajpur)
  • Updated: Aug 10, 2016 05:55 IST
Chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan with Narendra Modi at Jhotrada village in Alirajpur district on Tuesday. (Shankar Mourya/HT photo)

A rough weather greeted the Prime Minister’s public rally on Tuesday in this tribal hamlet situated 12 km from Bhabhara in Alirajpur district of Madhya Pradesh.

Broken spells of rains for past one week and drizzle on Tuesday morning turned the rally venue into a mess. Rains had uprooted three domes on Monday. Only one dome remained intact in addition to the one erected over podium.

Women and men from 15 districts of Indore and Ujjain divisions travelled overnight to reach the venue which was filled with ankle-deep slush. Many of them arrived early but worse awaited them.

They were frisked by security officials, as they were asked to undergo security exercise before entering the venue. This enraged some of them.

“We’re going back. We’ll watch the PM on television,” said Mandsaur district farmer Laxminarayan Patidar. “What should we do? It’s raining, it’s muddy. There is nothing to cover us. On top of it, we’re told to go back to get checked,” said farmer Ravi Singh from Agar.

As police and administration faced a tough time to deal with the men and women, co-operatives minister in-charge of Alirajpur district Vishwas Sarang told press persons to be positive. “It’s a patriotic occasion which the PM will address. People braved rains to come here. It should be appreciated,” he told HT.

By 11.15 am, the weather became clear. BJP workers and government personnel formed a large section of the crowd. “I came here on directives of our project officer (women and child development department),” said aanganwadi worker Suraj Pancholi from Barod.

There was an expectation that a big announcement for tribals would be made, if not by the Prime Minister, at least by chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, as Modi was speaking on World Tribal Day in a tribal district. But the people were disappointed on both counts.

Earlier in the day, chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, finance minister Jayant Malaiya, home minister Bhupendra Singh and other cabinet colleagues received the Prime Minister at the Devi Ahilyabai Holkar airport.

Local MLAs, Indore mayor Malini Gaud, chief secretary Antony D’sa. DGP Rishi Kumar Shukla, collector P Narahari and other officials were present.

Modi them embarked on his helicopter which flew him to Bhabhara, Alirajpur district for a public rally.

Several delegations had come to meet the Prime Minister at the airport, but all of them were stopped before they could enter the airport, must to their


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