Lucknow, March 6: In the last three days, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav along with his political partner Rahul Gandhi were engaged in a political kushti (wrestling) of mammoth proportion in Varanasi, UP, literally.
The winner of the kushti competition will be known on March 11--when the assembly election results of UP (along with Manipur, Goa, Punjab and Uttrakhand) will be announced. However, observers say PM Modi has clearly won the battle of Varanasi--the temple town which hosts some of the finest age-old traditional kushti akharas (gymnasiums).
In the final leg of UP assembly elections, PM Modi decided to spend three days in Varanasi, starting from March 4. During his Varanasi stay, the Bharatiya Janata Party's 'superstar' campaigner attended back-to-back election rallies and roadshows, and visited several religious and historical places.
It's in Varanasi, the PM brought back the memories of 'Modi wave'--first witnessed during 2014 Lok Sabha polls--as crowds thronged on the streets of the temple town to have a glimpse of their favourite leader.
Many of PM Modi's supporters in Varanasi stood firmly in front of television cameras and told journalists why they were voting for the BJP in UP. "We are voting for Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He is the one who will bring development in UP."
In comparison to PM Modi, Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh looked 'tired' and 'helpless', as Modi fans chanted 'Har har Modi, ghar ghar Modi' across the ghats of Varanasi. Akhilesh's political buddy and Congress vice president Rahul was found repeating the same charges against his bête noire Modi in the temple town.
Varanasi will vote on March 8, as a part of the final-phase of polling in the UP assembly elections. This time, elections in the state have been divided into seven phases of voting, starting from February 11.
Once again in Varanasi, Modi proved how no one could match his oratory skills and charisma to pull crowds. Even several of his former critics in the media have predicted a massive win for the BJP in the northern state because of the resurgence of 'Modi wave'. Or, is it too early to predict UP election results?