PM Modi’s b’day marked by events

Multiple states kicked off 20-day celebrations, commemorating the period between September 17, the PM’s birthday, and October 7, the day when he first took over as chief minister of Gujarat in 2001 -- marking 20 years of his political life.
A 71-feet cut-out of PM Narendra Modi is set up in Gujarat (HT Photo)
A 71-feet cut-out of PM Narendra Modi is set up in Gujarat (HT Photo)
Updated on Sep 18, 2021 03:37 AM IST
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By HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, New Delhi

From essay competitions and special prayers to 71kg cakes, sweets and 71-feet-tall cutouts, states ruled by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and political workers pulled out all the stops on Friday to celebrate Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s 71st birthday.

In Gujarat, primary education officers issued a circular, dated September 14, to all government and aided schools to organise an essay competition on “My Favourite PM is Narendra Modi.” Special prayers were offered Friday morning in the name of the prime minister at Badrinath, Kedarnath and Gangotri temples. in Delhi, 71 girls cut 71 cakes in Delhi to mark the day.

“I am humbled and overwhelmed beyond words. To each and every person who has wished me today - I would like to express gratitude from the bottom of my heart,” Modi tweeted in the evening.

20 DAY CELEBRATIONS

Multiple states kicked off 20-day celebrations, commemorating the period between September 17, the PM’s birthday, and October 7, the day when he first took over as chief minister of Gujarat in 2001 -- marking 20 years of his political life. In Uttar Pradesh, chief minister Yogi Adityanath announced that the 20 days would be called “Vikas Utsav.”

Uttar Pradesh state unit chief Swatantra Dev Singh started the celebrations by lighting 71 earthen lamps at Lucknow’s Hanuman Setu temple on Friday. In Varanasi, Modi’s Lok Sabha constituency, the BJP lit 71,000 diyas at Bharat Mata temple. Party cadre also distributed 71-kilogram laddoos across all assembly constituencies that make up the Varanasi Lok Sabha seat. Party workers also felicitated 71 farmers, 71 soldiers and 71 women frontline workers.

In Haryana, the BJP launched a 20-day-long ‘sewa aur samarpan’ (service and offering) campaign . During this period, the BJP plans to hold 71 blood donation camps, plant 71,000 saplings and hold seminars on 71 big-ticket policies and programmes of the Centre.

In Assam, the BJP said its nearly 4.2 million cadres will take part in a ‘sewa aur samarpan’ campaign across the state. “During the next fortnight, all our party leaders, cadres, ministers and MLAs will take part in various social welfare initiatives. We pray for Modiji’s long and healthy life so that he can fulfil his dream of making India a world-leading nation,” said chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma.

In Karnataka, the Basavaraj Bonmai government kicked off 20 days of celebrations with 1000 tablets and 350 laptops handed over to government schools in Bengaluru. Other activities included distribution of books, launching of smart boards, and inauguration of the Prerana educational app.

Prayers at temples

Prayers for the health of the PM were offered, including by senior cabinet ministers and chief ministers in BJP-ruled states. Varanasi’s Bharat Mata temple was illuminated with 71,000 earthen lamps. A 71-meter long chunari(A stole, it’s custom to put a chunari in the Ganga) to the Ganga at Dashashwamedh Ghat was offered and aartis were performed at 71 prominent temples of Varanasi.

Haryana BJP chief OP Dhankar and assembly speaker Gian Chand Gupta, along with BJP workers, organised a ‘havan’ at Mansa Devi shrine in Panchkula while in Guwahati, BJP members lit diyas at Kamakhya temple, and Sarma offered prayers at Bangshi Gopal Naamghar.

Uttarakhand chief minister Pushkar Singh Dhami virtually participated in the prayers offered at Kedarnath and Gangotri shrines and prayed for the long life of PM. Tripura chief minister Biplab Kumar Deb offered prayers at Tripurasundari temple in Gomati district, considered to be one of the Shaktipeethas (51 places of spiritual worship devoted to the Goddess Shakti).

71 themed events

Seventy-one kg laddus each were distributed in all eight assembly constituencies of Varanasi. In Madhya Pradesh, BJP workers distributed 71 books, 71 kilograms of sweets and planted 71 saplings.

A 71-feet cutout of Modi was unveiled in Mehsana in Gujarat while a 71-foot rangoli themed on the PM was seen at Centre Square in Vadodara.

Inaugurations and Plantation and Distribution Drives

In Bihar, chief minister Nitish Kumar inaugurated 70 oxygen plants and wrote a birthday message for the PM on a whiteboard. 38 of these plants were built using the PM Cares Fund and the remaining 32 were funded by the state government.

In Goa, chief minister Pramod Sawant distributed free wheelchairs. BJP’s Prahlad Joshi, Union Minister participated in a sanitation drive in Dehradun, while in Chandigarh, the BJP unit organised a sanitation drive, tree plantation, a vaccination drive, ‘hawan’, and a blood donation camp.

West Bengal governor Jagdeep Dhankhar and his wife Sudesh Dhankhar also took part in a tree plantation at Raj Bhavan in Kolkata.

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Monday, October 18, 2021