BJP to hold Modi rallies in eastern UP

BJP to hold Modi rallies in eastern UP

Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Apparently cautious after its defeat in Phulpur and Gorakhpur Lok Sabha bypolls and to regain its foothold in the eastern Uttar Pradesh, BJP has chalked out a comprehensive plan to hold series of rallies by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the region in the run-up to 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

According to the sources in the saffron party, Modi, who had addressed a public meeting at Magahar in Sant Kabir Nagar district on Thursday, will be addressing another rally in Mulayam Singh Yadav's Lok Sabha constituency, Azamgarh in the middle of the month.

Sources said that Modi would be laying the foundation stone for the ambitious 'Poorvanchal' (eastern) Expressway on July 14, that would connect the state capital with the border district, Ballia.

''He is likely to address a public meeting after laying the foundation stone,'' said a senior UP BJP leader here.

BJP sources said that the party planned to hold rallies of Modi in different districts of the eastern UP region almost every month. ''We plan to hold Modi rallies in Mau, Siddharth Nagar and some other districts in the next few months,'' the leader told Deccan Herald here.

Incidentally, many districts in the eastern region, which has a sizable population of Muslims, 'Yadavs' and Dalits, are considered to be strongholds of SP and BSP.

Though the BJP had swept the region in the 2014 Lok Sabha and 2017 Assembly polls in the state, the defeat in Phulpur and Gorakhpur both of which were in the eastern region, and the impact of the possible SP-BSP alliance appeared to have made the BJP jittery.

Another factor that may have prompted the BJP to focus on the region is the likely exit of the Suheldev Bharat Samaj Party (SBSP), its alliance partner in 2017.

SBSP commands considerable influence over 4% 'Rajbhar' community, which are in sizable numbers in around half a dozen districts in the eastern region.

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