It started with BJP national president JP Nadda’s public meeting in Gaya on Sunday ––the first such meeting during the Bihar elections –– in which 8,000 people attended. “It was a mix of real and virtual rally,” Devesh Kumar, Bihar BJP general secretary told ET. “While 8,000 people were on the ground, thousands were watching it on different platforms. Seven thousand chairs were put up for the rally.”
Other BJP leaders such as Sushil Kumar Modi, Bhupender Yadav, Nityanand Rai and Sanjay Jaiswal have started addressing public rallies since Monday. Sushil Kumar Modi has addressed three rallies by Tuesday and would be addressing 2-3 rallies every day. Rai addressed four meetings in the past two days. Bhupender Yadav too has addressed three public meetings –– at Aurangabad, Goh, and Dehri.
Nadda is expected to address a couple more rallies this week. “As per Election Commission guidelines, the number of people who can gather at a public meeting is to be decided by the returning officer. We are following that norm,” added Devesh Kumar. A joint rally by PM Narendra Modi and CM Nitish Kumar is being proposed at Gaya or Aarah next week.
Meanwhile, Union minister of state for home Nityanand Rai said in a rally that if a government by any of the Opposition parties is formed in Bihar, terrorists who are being neutralised in J&K by the Modi government will come and take shelter in Bihar.
“BJP will never allow this to happen”, he said and elaborated how the Modi government had scrapped Article 370 and 35A in J&K and how the Army had taught China a lesson. BJP is expected to bring in Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath to address rallies in Bihar soon to add to the “nationalistic pitch”.
Chief Minister Nitish Kumar will start his public meetings from Wednesday and would address eight small rallies in the first two days. On Wednesday, Nitish would address four rallies, including one in Mokama, from where RJD candidate Anant Singh has been winning for the last four times.
Initially, the schedule is to address JD(U) constituencies. “Virtual has not been Nitish Kumar’s thing. He always prefers to connect to people on the ground. He has done so many yatras in the past,” Sanjay Jha, a senior JDU leader, told ET.
RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav would start his public meetings from Wednesday. The party had planned a rally on Tuesday after the nomination of Tej Pratap Yadav from Hasanpur. But the local administration didn’t give them permission. On Wednesday, a road show has been planned after Tejashwi Yadav files his nomination.
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