- Priyanka Gandhi-Vadra’s Ganga Yatra will culminate in Varanasi with her meeting with the relatives of CRPF jawans killed in Pulwama
- The 140-km long tour began on Monday from Manaiya Ghat of Prayagraj
- Priyanka targeted Prime Minister Modi, asking, ‘Where did 56-inch chest disappear?’
Varanasi: Today was the last day of Congress’s national general secretary Priyanka Gandhi-Vadra’s Ganga Yatra. Priyanka reached Ramnagar from Chanar in Mirzapur. On the tour, she encountered BJP supporters raining pro-Modi slogans. They were beaten up by Congress workers.
Vadra rode on a boat from Ramnagar to Assi Ghat. Earlier in Ramnagar, she garlanded a statue of former prime minister Lal Bahadur Shastri and laid a wreath amid Congress workers’ greeting her with flowers and slogans.
Priyanka Gandhi Vadra offers prayers at Kashi Vishwanath temple in Varanasi. pic.twitter.com/mj5UXWIvVR
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Here, Priyanka met Diwakar Shastri, one of the grandsons of Lal Bahadur Shastri, too. The political loyalty of Shastri’s descendants is divided between BJP and Congress camps.
‘Priyanka insulted Shastri’
After Priyanka Vadra’s departure from the residence of former prime minister Lal Bahadur Shastri, Ramnagar, BJP workers conducted a shuddhi (purification) of Lal Bahadur Shastri’s statue with the waters of the Ganges.
The activists said that Priyanka Vadra’s husband and her party are involved in corruption. They said her act of laying wreaths at the statue of Lal Bahadur Shastri was akin to insulting the memory of the former prime minister who was honesty personified.
‘This election demands new politics’
Priyanka Vadra directly attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi during an interaction with sailors and women at the Assi Ghat of Varanasi along the bank of the Ganga. She said, “Where has the 56-inch chest vanished? This election demands new politics. The people of Benares must raise their voices. There are many people of the Nishad (boatmen) caste here. But no help was given to them. You need a government that will help you.”
Change in schedule
Priyanka’s itinerary saw a minor change on Wednesday. Priyanka left Mirzapur by car for Ramnagar where she visited the house of Lal Bahadur Shastri. After this, the journey to Kashi is to be traversed by boat again. According to sources, in Mirzapur, her boat was denied the permission to go further as the waters in the Ganga had ebbed.
Priyanka will offer prayers at the Baba Vishwanath Temple in Kashi and Kotwal of Kashi at the Bhairav Mandir.
Priyanka will then meet the family of CRPF jawan Avdhesh Yadav and Ramesh Yadav, who were killed on duty in the Pulwama terror attack.
In the evening, Vadra will be back in Delhi. Due to the change in the travel plan, the visit to the Shitala Mata Temple in Chunar has been postponed.
Prior to this, on Tuesday, Priyanka had marched in Mirzapur to the court of Ma Vindhavsinini and customarily laid a cloth on the dargah of Khawaja Janab Ismail Chisti. Priyanka started her second day’s journey by worshiping Sita at Sitamarhi on Tuesday morning.
140 km of Ganga Yatra concludes
The Congress general secretary started her three-day Ganga Yatra and Sanchi talk programme on Monday on the Sangam shores of Prayagraj by offering prayers to the Ganga. From Manaiya Ghat, Priyanka went on a journey to six Lok Sabha constituencies to contact the people living along the Ganges.
Earlier, Vadra had visited Lete Hanuman and the Akshayavat. Congress workers welcomed her along the route.
Priyanka took potshots at Modi’s ‘chowkidar’ campaign, saying only the rich could afford watchmen. Her first day’s journey ended in Sitamarhi.
Vadra eyes six seats in Lok Sabha
Ganga flows through five districts from Varanasi to Prayagraj. Priyanka is eyeing six Lok Sabha seats in these districts. Congress ranked number four here in the 2009 election.
Priyanka Gandhi-Vadra undertook this journey to energise booth level workers of the Congress. This three-day trip to Varanasi from Prayagraj will be concluded on 20 March. Her special focus is on Uttar Pradesh’s Prayagraj and Varanasi, which has a special place on the political map of the country.