On Priyanka Gandhi’s boat trail: Temple visits, potshots at PM Modi over jobshttps://indianexpress.com/elections/priyanka-gandhi-ganga-yatra-pm-modi-congress-uttar-pradesh-elections-5636428/

On Priyanka Gandhi’s boat trail: Temple visits, potshots at PM Modi over jobs

Kickstarting the party’s campaign in the politically crucial state from Manaiya Ghat along river Ganga in Prayagraj on Monday, Priyanka interacted with a cross-section of people, including students, during her three-day tour, which involved a pit stop at Mirzapur.

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Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra starts her boat ride on the Ganga in Prayagraj. (Express photo by Vishal Srivastav)

Congress general secretary in-charge of eastern Uttar Pradesh Priyanka Gandhi concluded her 100-kilometre ‘Ganga Yatra’ on Wednesday by offering prayers at Kashi Vishwanath temple in Varanasi and reminding the people of the constituency of the BJP’s unfulfilled promises.

Kickstarting the party’s campaign in the politically crucial state from Manaiya Ghat along river Ganga in Prayagraj on Monday, Priyanka interacted with a cross-section of people, including students, during her three-day tour, which involved a pit stop at Mirzapur.

Priyanka began the day by offering prayers at Dashashwamedh Ghat and even visited the ancestral home of former prime minister Lal Bahadur Shastri. Later, addressing a small gathering, she whipped out BJP’s 2014 election manifesto for Varanasi and said none of the eight promises made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the constituency was fulfilled.

Ismein 8 vaade kiye Modi ji ne, issme se ek bhi pura hua ki nahi? 1 bhi nahi. Ye prachar ki rajneeti saral hai, koi bhi kar sakta hai. (PM Modi had made eight promises for Varanasi but not even one of them has been fulfilled. The politics of making empty promises is easy),” she said.

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The river route from Prayagraj to Varanasi was chosen for Priyanka’s yatra to reach out to the members of the backward communities. The boatsmen community also have a strong presence there.

Priyanka Gandhi comes out after offering prayers at Bade Hanuman temple in Prayagraj. (File)

Priyanka begins ‘Ganga Yatra’ from Prayagraj

Priyanka began her Ganga Yatra by participating in an “aarti” at the famous Hanuman temple in Prayagraj. Clad in a green cotton sari, Priyanka interacted with students and reporters, with her speeches centred around the unemployment situation in the country and BJP’s promise of giving Rs 15 lakh to each account.

Taking a dig at the PM, the Congress general secretary on Monday said rich people have “chowkidars” and not the farmers, who have to guard their own fields. Asking the people to “wake-up and become aware” of their rights, Priyanka said that neither the government nor the country is anyone’s “jageer” (fiefdom) and hence no one should be made to beg for their rights.

The entourage stopped at four ghats in Prayagraj before ending Day 1 at Sitamamarhi, where she was greeted with religious chantings. At Sitamarhi, Priyanka said if PM Modi was claiming to be a strong leader with a 56-inch chest, he should take strong decisions.

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Priyanka Gandhi Vadra takes a boat ride to the Sangam. (File)

PM should stop thinking people are fools: Priyanka in Mirzapur

On her pitstop at Mirzapur district, Priyanka faced slogans of “Har Har Modi” when she visited the famous Vindhyavasini Maa temple in Vindhyachal. She was heckled by devotees waiting for her to finish her visit so that they could offer prayers.

Speaking to reporters outside, she took a veiled dig at PM Modi over his remarks seeking accountability of the Congress during its 70-year rule. “There is an expiry date to your statement about 70 years. You have been in government for the past five years. What have you done in five years?” she said.

Later, Priyanka visited Dargah of Hazarat Khwaja Ismile Chishti and took the boat on Bhatauli Ghat and travelled about 15 km on the Ganga to reach Sindhora Ghat in Mirzapur late evening. She then took a smaller boat to reach Chunar, where she held a road show late on Tuesday night.

Priyanka faced cries of “Har Har Modi” when she visited the famous Vindhyavasini Maa temple. (File)

At Chunar, Priyanka said PM Modi should stop thinking that people are fools and alleged that in the past five years, the Centre had attacked every institution in the country.

“The PM has attacked every institution in this country for the last five years, including the institution of which all of you are a part. So I think the PM should stop thinking that people are fools and understand that they see through all this,” she said.