Prime Minister Narendra Modi was mobbed by journalists looking to take a selfie with him after the ‘Diwali Milan’ luncheon meeting organised for the media fraternity at the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) headquarters here on Saturday.
He waded with folded hands through the sea of scribes as everyone had their cell phones out to click a picture with him.
“I wanted to host this event around Diwali, but I was indisposed. It’s good that it is happening now or else we would have had to wait till Christmas,” he jested.
Addressing the media earlier, Prime Minister Modi emphasised the importance of festivals and their celebration in the nation. He asserted the celebrations were an example of India’s great unity and diversity.
“Celebrating a festival gives direction as well as strength to the society. I can’t imagine the number of stories that can be churned if we sit to analyse the impact of our festivals in our society. If you take the Kumbh Mela for example, a small Europe comes and assembles by the Ganga every day — that is (how many) people gather at the event. This signifies strength,” the Prime Minister said.
Watch | PM Modi hosts ‘Diwali Milan’ for journalists
The Prime Minister was accompanied by BJP president Amit Shah, finance minister Arun Jaitley and Union parliamentary affairs minister Venkaiah Naidu, among others.
BJP chief Shah said the party was late in celebrating ‘Diwali Milan’ but that he was glad the tradition had continued. In 2014, Modi had organised a similar interaction with the media fraternity.
This event comes a day after Prime Minister Modi broke the ice with Congress president Sonia Gandhi and his predecessor Manmohan Singh, whom he invited over for tea, to talk about the landmark Goods and Services Tax Bill and for the smooth running of the Parliament.