8:12 pm - Thursday November 12, 2015

Arvind Kejriwal’s Roadshow In Varanasi, Hours After Narendra Modi’s Drive-through

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Varanasi: Supporters in white caps waved brooms and cheered as Arvind Kejriwal, the Aam Aadmi Party chief, began his roadshow in Varanasi today, hours after Narendra Modi’s dramatic visit to the city that votes on Monday, the last day of the mammoth national election.

Mr Kejriwal, who is contesting from Varanasi against the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate, will cover a distance of 7.5 km from the holy city’s Malviya Gate to Lahurabir Chowk. He is flanked by party colleagues, prominent candidates and celebrity supporters.

Mr Kejriwal, 45, has challenged Mr Modi to an open debate “at a time and place of his choosing”.

Mr Modi’s rally on Thursday just outside Varanasi and three hour drive-through in the city later was the highlight of the BJP’s bitter confrontation with the Election Commission over what the party describes as a “ban” on him in the constituency from where he is running for Parliament for the first time.

Mr Modi used the standoff to target the Congress, saying at his rally yesterday, “The Congress must understand. The people have defeated you; the Election Commission can’t make you win.”

Tomorrow, Rahul Gandhi is expected to visit Varanasi in a tit-for-tat move after Mr Modi campaigned in his Amethi. Mr Gandhi will hold a roadshow to pitch for the Congress candidate, Ajay Rai.

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