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Tough track ahead for Rajnath

Tough track lies ahead as BJP chief Rajnath Singh's Bharat Suraksha Yatra enters his home state UP. After travelling through Naxalite-infested Orissa, Jharkhand, Chattisgarh and Bihar ? where crowds were not the only problem ? Rajnath is to address a rally in Varanasi on Tuesday to flag off his yatra in the state.

india Updated: Apr 18, 2006 00:58 IST

Tough track lies ahead as BJP chief Rajnath Singh's Bharat Suraksha Yatra enters his home state UP.

After travelling through Naxalite-infested Orissa, Jharkhand, Chattisgarh and Bihar — where crowds were not the only problem — Rajnath is to address a rally in Varanasi on Tuesday to flag off his yatra in the state.

Normally, Rajnath's yatra in UP should have been a big affair for his supporters but they do not seem to be too happy. 

Though Rajnath has done several yatras in UP, they say this time the BJP chief has been handed a route including areas not considered to be a stronghold of BJP.

Rajnath's yatra moves from Varanasi  (where the blasts provided the “trigger” for L K Advani to announce the twin yatras) on a 800-km-long journey — Jaunpur, Mirzapur, Allahabad, Pratapgarh, Sultanpur, Hydergarh Maharajganj, Harchandpur, Bachhrawa, Shivgarh (almost on the outskirts of Lucknow), Morawa, Sitapur, Lakhimpur,  Shazahnpur, Puranpur and Pilibhit from where it enters Uttaranchal.

Whereas, Leader of Opposition L K Advani's yatra, which passes through UP from May 6 to 9, is going to cover all those areas considered to be the traditional stronghold of BJP. They include Lucknow, Kanpur, Unnao, Farurukhabad, Etah, Aligarh, Khurja, Ghaziabad, and Meerut.

However, Rajnath's yatra will avoid Rae Bareli because the BJP has decided not to link the yatra's course with any by-election or election.