Oppn cries foul over Modi’s Himalaya trip

Oppn cries foul over Modi’s Himalaya trip

Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrives at Kedarnath, for this two day pilgrimage to Himalayan shrines, in Rudraprayag district, Saturday, May 18, 2019. PM Modi will visit Badrinath on Sunday. (PTI Photo)

As photos of Narendra Modi in a saffron robe meditating in Kedarnath, a day before Varanasi goes to polls went viral on social media, Opposition parties trained guns on the prime minister saying he violated the Model Code of Conduct (MCC) and ridiculed his “red carpet” welcome at the shrine.

Commenting on the photo where Modi is seen walking on the red carpet pathway, Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said, “true devotees go visit the shrine of Baba (Lord Shiva) only after giving up their ego and pride and not by getting the red carpet spread for them. Modiji, you must be known at least this much.”

CPM leader Sitaram Yechury said, “Religion is a matter of personal faith and EC has reiterated that it cannot be used for garnering votes. But Modi violates the MCC brazenly with footage of his Kedarnath religious activity over TV channels during the silent period before polling. And EC continues to sleep on the job.”

AICC secretary Manickam Tagore tweeted a news report from 2015 about how Rahul chose to trek to the shrine instead of flying there.

In a similar fashion, on the day voting was happening to the Karnataka Assembly polls last year, Modi had surprised all by making a sudden visit to Muktinath and Pashupatinath temples in Kathmandu in Nepal.

Television channels had then run hours-long programmes of Modi at the temples, evoking criticism from the Opposition, who called it a violation of the MCC. Temple trips have become a common feature of the campaign strategies of both the BJP and Congress.