Lucknow decked up for first ever Dussehra visit by a PM

RSTV Bureau

Breaking from traditional appearance at Delhi’s famous Ramlila Maidan on Dusseehra, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will attend the historic Aishbagh Ramlila in Lucknow on Tuesday.

File photo of Vijayasadhami celebrations in Lucknow's Ramlila ground

File photo of Vijayasadhami celebrations in Lucknow’s Ramlila ground

Prime Minister is expected to reach Lucknow on Tuesday afternoon and participate in the ‘aarti’ and then fire the symbolic arrow to burn the effigy of demon king Ravana. Modi will be accompanied by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh who represents Lucknow constituency in Lok Sabha.

The city has been converted into a fortress with the officials of Special Protection Group (SPG) taking their position and monitoring the security of Aishbagh Ramlila ground and the roads. UP Governor Ram Naik and Chief Minister Akhikesh Yadav are likely to welcome the PM at the airport.

Prime Minister’s visit assumes an added significance because of assembly polls due next year in Uttar Pradesh where the saffron party is making a concerted bid to come back to power after a gap of 15 years and is up against ruling Samajwadi Party and main opposition Mayawati-led BSP.

File Photo of Prime Minister during Dussehra celebrations at Ramleela Maidan in Dlehi  Photo-PTi

File Photo of Prime Minister during Dussehra celebrations at Ramleela Maidan in Dlehi

In the absence of strong regional leaders, BJP is again banking on Modi’s appeal to power its campaign in the state, which it swept in the Lok Sabha polls riding on a national wave in his support but where it is perceived to have slipped since.

BSP president Mayawati has already lashed out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Lucknow and called his appeared “politically motivated.”

She said that Central government should have toned down Dussehra celebrations taking into account the loss suffered by the families of soldiers killed in the deadly Uri terror attack.

“The pyre of jawans who lost their lives in the Uri attack has not yet died down, but the Prime Minister is coming to Lucknow to celebrate Dussehra for his political motives,” Mayawati said at a rally here on the occasion of party founder Kanshi Ram’s 10th death anniversary..

“It is likely that for the same purpose, he (Modi) might come to UP for Diwali as well. Taking the loss of the Uri martyrs’ families into account, BJP should have celebrated Dussehra and Diwali with sobriety and simplicity,” said Mayawati who is a former Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh.