PM Narendra Modi cancels Varanasi visit after labourer dies at venuehttps://indianexpress.com/article/cities/lucknow/pm-cancels-varanasi-visit-after-labourer-dies-at-venue/

PM Narendra Modi cancels Varanasi visit after labourer dies at venue

The Varanasi district administration officials, however, claimed that continuous downpour since midnight was the reason for cancellation of Narendra Modi's visit.

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The waterlogged DLW Ground where Prime Minister Narendra Modi was supposed to address a function, in Varanasi on Thursday. (Source: Express photo)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi cancelled his visit to his Lok Sabha constituency Varanasi Thursday following the death of a labourer, who was electrocuted while decorating the stage at the DLW ground venue for the PM’s address.

MoS (Independent Charge) for Power, Piyush Goyal, told mediapersons in Varanasi that PM has cancelled his visit because of the unfortunate death of labourer Deonath (19). He also announced an immediate financial assistance of Rs 7.5 lakh for the family of labourer, who belonged to Midnapore in West Bengal.

The Varanasi district administration officials, however, claimed that continuous downpour since midnight was the reason for cancellation of PM visit.

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A magisterial inquiry has also been ordered into the labourer’s death. “Action would be taken against those found responsible for the lapses leading to the death,” Goyal said, according to whom the labourer was decorating the stage with flowers at a height of around 8 feet from the ground when he lost control and held an electricity cable that snapped, making him come in contact with an open wire.

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He said that PM expressed grief over the death and insisted on cancelling the day’s event. Goyal said that he was sent by the PM to help the family of the deceased. The minister later visited BHU Hospital, where the victim’s autopsy was conducted.

BJP state president Laxmikant Bajpai denied that rain was the reason behind PM’s decision to cancel the visit.

According to sources, the Power Finance Corporation Limited and the Power Grid Corporation of India Limited — both Government of India undertakings — were engaged in preparations at the DLW ground and a waterproof pandal had been erected for a gathering of around 30,000 people.

Goyal said that PM will soon decide on a revised programme to inaugurate the BHU Trauma Centre and launch development projects in Varanasi.

This is the third time in a row when PM has cancelled his Varanasi visit. On June 28, his visit was cancelled at the last moment following heavy rainfall and water logging at DLW ground. He had earlier cancelled his Varanasi visit in October after Cyclone Hudhud hit India’s eastern coast on October 12.