Unlike the inaugural Sadbhavana Mission fast in Ahmedabad a month ago,where the presence of Muslims was overwhelming,in the second leg at Chief Minister Narendra Modis day-long fast in Dwarka,it was their absence which remained conspicuous.
While the BJP Minority Morcha front leaders shared dais in Dwarka with Modi,in the audience they could hardly be spotted. And for those who were present,the draw was different.
Those present were largely from regions like Rupen Bander and Salaya,which has sizeble Muslim presence. But the Muslim women said they were part of the region-wide anganwadi contingent,who were present at the venue,while the menfolk said it was more to support the Dwarka MLA Prabhuba Manek,irrespective of his party affiliation.
There was a small group of Muslims from Okha Mandal taluka. We are supporters of Dwarka MLA Pabubha Manek. We are always by his side, said Salim Miyan Zubermiyan.
Congress puts up show of strength
Congress MP Vikram Madam was beaming as the number of supporters swelled with every passing minute. Within hours of beginning of the fast,it was estimated that nearly 12,000 people were at the venue near Satwara Samaj Wadi in the eastern part of the coastal town.
Supporters started pouring in at the dusty venue of Satrkarma fast in luxury buses,cars,vans and trucks since 9 am. The rush became so heavy that Madam himself had to seize the microphone of the sound system twice and ask people to maintain order. The government had been doing propaganda that I will not get even 5,000 people. However,he (Modi) can see for himself that more than 10,000 people are sitting in front of me, Madam said while addressing the audience.
People from across Jamnagar were brought in private vehicles by Congress workers and supporters of the MP.