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Friday, Sep 20, 2019

PM Narendra Modi to visit Kurukshetra with ‘message of cleanliness’

Prime Minister will be in Kurukshetra for the launch of Swachh Shakti 2019 programme. He will also lay the foundation of several projects through video-conferencing.

india Updated: Feb 12, 2019 07:38 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Greater Noida: Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses during the inauguration of 13th International Oil and Gas Conference - PETROTECH 2019 at India Expo Centre, at Greater Noida, Monday, Feb.11, 2019. (PIB Photo via PTI)(PTI2_11_2019_000071B)
Greater Noida: Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses during the inauguration of 13th International Oil and Gas Conference - PETROTECH 2019 at India Expo Centre, at Greater Noida, Monday, Feb.11, 2019. (PIB Photo via PTI)(PTI2_11_2019_000071B)(PTI)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will kick off the BJP’s poll campaign for the Lok Sabha election to be held later this year in Haryana’s Kurukshetra on Tuesday when he is scheduled to address a programme dedicated to women.

The state government and district administration have, however, claimed that the day-long visit is a non-political event as Modi will take part in Swachh Shakti 2019 but it assumes political significance as it comes a few months before the Lok Sabha polls.

His trip to the state also comes on the heels of the Bharatiya Janata Party’s victory in Jind bypoll and a good show in the mayoral elections earlier.

Political experts say Prime Minister Modi’s visit holds great political significance for the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party even though the programme is being organised to spread the message of cleanliness.

The Prime Minister had visited the northern state in October last year when he unveiled a statue of late peasant leader Chhotu Ram at his native village Garhi-Sampla in the Jat heartland of Rohtak.

“The Prime Minister will send out a message of cleanliness from Kurukshetra on February 12, during the Swachh Shakti-2019 programme. This programme is dedicated to women,” the Haryana government said in a release.

Modi will lay the foundation stones of several mega projects in the state via video conferencing. They will include Pandit Deendayal Upadhyay Medical University at Kutail in Karnal, National Cancer Institute in Jhajjar, widening of Kaithal Karnal road, a PG college in Panchkula, a war memorial in Panipat and Ayush University in Kurukshetra from the rally site.

Officials said Modi will also lay the foundation of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in Rewari, which was announced in the interim budget.

The BJP’s Kurukshetra MP Raj Kumar Saini has already formed a separate party and

Modi’s visit can lift the morale of party workers and supporters, who felt they were shortchanged by Saini even as they ensured his victory by a margin of 1.3 lakh votes in the last general elections.

The Kurukshetra Lok Sabha seat has an electorate comprising OBCs, especially Sainis, Aggarwals, Brahmins, Gurjars, Punjabis, Sikhs and Dalits, besides Jats. Holding the PM’s rally in the town is being seen as an attempt by the party to reach out to these communities.

Though Jats have the biggest chunk of voters in Kurukshetra constituency, candidates from the community have not performed well in the past elections and the seat has been mostly represented by Sainis.

The BJP government in the state is making all-out efforts to make the Swachh Shakti programme a mega event by ensuring a huge gathering, wherein around 17,000 women ‘Swachhta Champions’, including representatives of panchayati raj institutions across the country, will be honoured for their outstanding work in Swachh Bharat Mission and making Swachh Bharat a reality.

The preparations for the event have been going for the past week and about 3,000 personnel of Haryana police and 2,000 employees from the state and the Centre will be on duty during the programme.

Kurukshetra deputy commissioner (DC) SS Phulia said 25 duty magistrates have been appointed for the two-day programme, which began on Monday.

First Published: Feb 12, 2019 07:36 IST