| BJP workers show the memorandum that will be sent to President Pranab Mukherjee. Picture by Ranjeet Kumar Dey |
Patna, Oct. 6: The state BJP is sending a memorandum signed by over a thousand people to President Pranab Mukherjee, asking him to defer his visit during the party’s big-ticket Hunkar Rally.
On Sunday, the party once again attacked the state government and chief minister Nitish Kumar over the President’s visit clashing with their rally. Former deputy chief minister Sushil Kumar Modi tweeted: “Now Nkumar has invited President of india to Patna on the same dates. He will be in Patna on 26th & 27th.”
Another tweet said: “Nkumar is playing all tricks to put hurdles in success of NAMO’s Hunkar Rally on 27th Oct. Fst permission for whole Maidan was denied.”
BJP sources said a section of leaders in the JD(U) wanted to ban the Hunkar Rally but the state government decided to create hurdles instead. In another tweet, Modi said: “The whole city will be barricaded for President's visit? Namo’s plane will not be allowed to land till President’s spl plane takes off?”
Sensing trouble for the rally to be addressed by the BJP’s star campaigner and prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, the party’s state leadership decided to send a memorandum, signed by over a thousand people from all walks of life, requesting the President to change the dates of his Bihar visit. Bankipore BJP MLA Nitin Navin, who drafted the letter, said: “We want to appeal to the President to defer his visit, as it clashes with the party’s much-acclaimed Hunkar Rally.”
Navin said the Hunkar rally and the President’s visit were both important events for the people of Patna. “We don’t want to create disturbances on October 26 and 27.”
The President is scheduled to visit Patna on October 26 to address the IIT, Patna, convocation. The next day, he would fly to Ara to unveil former deputy Prime Minister Babu Jagjivan Ram’s statue.
Navin said: “The state BJP will fax the letter to the President’s office. Also, a delegation of BJP leaders would meet the President and hand over a memorandum appealing to him to defer his Bihar visit.”
The state BJP leadership expects over 5 lakh people to attend the Hunkar Rally.
Sushil Kumar Modi tweeted: “If Tamil Nadu, Hydr, Rewari where BJP has hardly any MLA, can mobilise lakhs of people for Namo, then one can imagine the numbers for Bihar rally.”
The BJP has 92 MLAs in the 243-seat Assembly. The party has sent out formal invites to heads of its district, panchayat and ward units, asking them, their co-workers and sympathisers to participate in the Hunkar Rally and make it a success.
Residents are relieved that the rally falls on a Sunday. Vijay Srivastava, a Boring Canal road resident, said: “Thank God the rally is on a Sunday. Had it been planned on a week day it would have inconvenienced all, as there would be lakhs of people on the roads and heavy barricading, too.”