PM may launch Lok Sabha poll campaign from Kedarnath

PM may launch Lok Sabha poll campaign from Kedarnath

Prime Minister Narendra Modi's second visit to the Kedarnath shrine in the Himalayas in less than six months is not just about adding the Hindutva flavour to the current election season.

Rather, it is linked to a plan that could see the prime minister begin the 2019 Parliamentary poll campaign from there once the restoration work of the shrine is completed, BJP leaders said.

A day after Deepavali, Modi went to Kedarnath to launch several reconstruction projects before it closes for the harsh winter. He laid the foundation stone for a new Kedarpuri, which was destroyed by flash floods in June 2013, in which 5,000 people lost their lives.

Kedarnath is located about 11,000 feet above sea level in Rudraprayag district of Uttarakhand. It is billed as one of the "char dhams" (four holy places), others being Badrinath, Gangotri and Yamunotri.

The state's BJP government has been given an October 2018 deadline to reconstruct facilities around the shrine.

A few days ago, BJP national president Amit Shah had called a meeting of senior leaders, including Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat, and asked them to speed up matters in this regard, party insiders said.

Several private companies have also pitched in with funds and resources. The Sajjan Jindal-led JSW Group announced on Friday that it has entered into a pact with the Uttarakhand government for the reconstruction and restoration of some sites.

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