Ahmedabad, Swati Bhan, May 15, 2014, DHNS: 2:50 IST
From a paanwala offering a “meetha paan” free to a chaiwala offering free “cutting tea”, it’s been frenzied reactions on the streets of Gujarat even as the EVMs across the country are yet to be opened for Verdict 2014.
The BJP too is riding high on the wave of a big victory predicted by pollsters.
So, even before the counting has begun, the party announced the victory rally plans from Vadodara to Ahmedabad to the national capital and lastly to Varanasi.
Barely two km away from Narendra Modi’s residence in Gandhinagar, paan seller Mohit Sharma is ebullient on the eve of the counting. He’s already put out big banners announcing free “meetha paans” on Friday “after Modi’s victory is stamped”. “I am certain that he is winning. So as a gesture toward a sweet win, am offering free of cost paan,” said Mohit, undeterred by the fact that he would lose out on money.
It’s the same sentiment for Bikhubhai, a small-time tea vendor in Ahmedabad who has offered free “cutting chai” to what he claims, “a new era in country’s politics where a tea seller has risen to the post of the prime minister.”
The BJP announced that it will be Diwali time in Gujarat as the counting culminates. “Across the state we have planned major celebrations. It will be like Diwali,” announced party spokesman, Vijay Rupani.
The BJP’s prime ministerial candidate, in case of the exit polls turning right, is expected to visit his mother and then leave for Vadodara to address a victory rally before returning to Ahmedabad to address another one. On May 17, Modi would fly to Delhi and later to Varanasi where, among other events, he will hold a “Ganga aarti”.
Rupani announced that a victory in Vadodara–one of the seats where Modi is contesting from– is almost a foregone conclusion; the party workers there would celebrate the large victory margin which they are expecting.
The Congress had pitted senior leader Madhusudan Mistry to contest against Modi. The BJP has also planned victory processions in other parts of the state with the party’s own assessment and several exit polls predicting a clear majority and a gain for the BJP even in the state.
Amidst all the frenzy across the state, the man in question spent the day in bungalow No 26, the official residence of the chief minister in Gandhinagar and also launched a mobile app.