Modi reached Jolly Grant Airport near Dehradun on Saturday morning, where he was received by Chief Minister Trivendra Rawat. He then proceeded to Kedarnath, reaching amidst tight security at 9.30 am, for what Uttarakhand BJP president Ajay Bhatt called a “spiritual and absolutely personal” visit.
As Sukh Ram, former Union minister, addressed the crowd seeking support for Aashray, his voice choked with emotion. In reaction, Aashray’s eyes welled up with tears, and it took some effort on Aashray’s part to take control of his emotions while he was on stage.
With a large population in the Himachal Pradesh — especially in the Kangra and Hamirpur belt — being that of ex-servicemen and personnel currently serving in the armed forces, national security is one of BJP’s main poll pitches.
"The high import was because the defence deals were like ATMs for them (the Congress) to extract money, so they didn’t let the country become self-dependent. There is no defence deal over which serious allegations of corruption have not been levelled against them.”
Seeking votes for BJP candidate from Kangra, Kishan Kapoor, Shah said, “I have come here to tell you that if you make Kishan Kapoor an MP and make (Narendra) Modi ji the prime minister, we will endure that Article 370 is scrapped from Kashmir.”
"Modiji gave two tight slaps to his coach (veteran BJP leader L K) Advaniji… He didn’t even listen to his team of Gadkariji, Arun Jaitleyji, Sushma Swarajji, when they warned him against getting into the Congress side (in the kabaddi match)."
PM Modi was campaigning in Mandi to garner support for the BJP candidate from the Mandi Lok Sabha seat, Ram Swaroop Sharma, who is facing anti-incumbency. "Today I have come here to ask for your blessings for myself,” he said, adding that he shares a “bond of love” with the people of the state.
In the Mandi Lok Sabha seat, the issues including that of improving communication by four-laning of roads and railway lines, and construction of a salt mining plant have taken a back seat this election season.
In 2014 Lok Sabha polls, under an evident “Modi wave”, BJP’s Virender again won against the Congress but this time with a higher margin of 84,187 votes. The Shimla (SC) Lok Sabha seat comprises 17 state Assembly seats. In the 2017 state Assembly polls, the BJP and the Congress had won eight seats each, with the CPM winning one seat