Hindustan Times (Jalandhar)

Modi to address rally in Udhampur today

Will hit the campaign trail in J&K with a first rally in the key segment that goes to polls on April 19

- Ravi Krishnan Khajuria ravi.khajuria@htlive.com

Ahead of the April 19-polls in Udhampur Lok Sabha constituen­cy, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will address a rally in the district on Friday.

“The party has made elaborate arrangemen­ts for the PM’s rally at Modi Ground on Friday. We are expecting two lakh people, who will come from Kathua, Ramban, Doda, Kishtwar and Udhampur districts,” said Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) district chief Arun Gupta.

The PM would explain policies and programmes of the BJP and seek votes from the people, he added.

A senior police officer said that the venue has been sanitised by the security personnel using sniffer dogs and detectors. “PM is likely to address the rally around 11 am. Security arrangemen­ts as per protocol have been made,” he added.

The BJP has named incumbent MP Dr Jitendra Singh from the seat for the third consecutiv­e Lok Sabha polls. He had won the 2014 and 2019 general elections from Udhampur.

“PM Modi is an amazing crowd puller. Whether one likes his narratives or not, people like to listen to him. Since the BJP has been focusing on the two Lok Sabha seats of Jammu province, Modi’s visit would certainly brighten the prospects of the party candidates,” said Zafar Choudhary, a political analyst.

While Congress has fielded Choudhary Lal Singh, Ghulam Nabi Azad’s Democratic Progressiv­e Azad Party (DPAP) has fielded party chairperso­n’s close confidante GM Saroori.

Union home minister Amit Shah, in a recent interview, had made it clear that since the BJP has no strong base in three constituen­cies in Kashmir, Anantnag-Rajouri, Srinagar and Baramulla, the party would focus on two seats of Jammu region.

While Choudhary Lal Singh and DPAP’s Saroori are wooing the voters on statehood and special constituti­onal provisions, Dr Singh has been listing “all round developmen­t” in J&K post revocation of Article 370.

He has also demanded that the Congress clears its stand on Article 370.

The Prime Minister is likely to corner the Opposition on issues such as Article 370, Pakistansp­onsored terrorism, neglect of marginal sections etc.

Congress and DPAP have also been raising the issues of unemployme­nt, rights over land and jobs to the locals and spiraling inflation.

A total of 12 candidates are in the fray from the Udhampur constituen­cy which is spread over five districts of Kishtwar, Doda, Ramban, Udhampur and Kathua. It has over 16.23 lakh voters, including 7.77 lakh women. Dr Singh won the seat in 2014 and 2019.

Lal Singh won the seat on a Congress mandate in 2004 and 2009.

On Wednesday, Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath had addressed a rally in Kathua.

 ?? WASEEM ANDRABI /HT ?? Security forces check the venue ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rally, in Udhampur on Thursday.
WASEEM ANDRABI /HT Security forces check the venue ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s rally, in Udhampur on Thursday.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India