Varanasi is all set to accord a warm welcome to Prime Minister Narendra Modi when he visits his parliamentary constituency to take part in the Dev Deepawali festival on Monday.
This will be the prime minister’s first visit to his constituency since the nation-wide lockdown due to the novel coronavirus pandemic and the second this year as last time he came here on February 16 to inaugurate the Pt Deen Dayal Upadhyay Smriti Sthal at Parao apart from launching projects worth Rs 1,254 crore.
It will also be the first time that Modi will attend the internationally famous Dev Deepawali festival, the first post-coronavirus pandemic festival which is going to be celebrated in a grand manner.
The 84-odd ghats spread in over 7-km semicircle will glitter with about 11 lakh diyas (earthen lamps) and illuminated with attractive lighting arrangements on both sides of the river Ganga apart from cultural programmes to be staged at 15 main ghats.
Though Modi had attended the Ganga aarti and other programmes at the river Ganga on many occasions, including when he accompanied French President Emmanuel Macron and Japanese PM Shinzo Abe, he could not visit the mythological city during Dev Deepawali festival.
The entire ghat areas have been decorated with attractive structures, paintings and lights to add grandeur to the festival on the auspicious occasion of Kartik Purnima, which is a pious day not only for Hindus but also for Sikhs and Buddhists.
And during this visit, Modi will not only light the first diya at 5:15 pm at Rajghat but also watch the ghats when all the diyas are lit. Meanwhile, he will go to Kashi Vishwanath Corridor to see the progress made in one of his dream projects here.
In the state, Dev Deepawali will be the second festival after Diwali at Ayodhya which is going to be organised in a big manner.
During his 6:40-hour stay here, Modi will first go to Khazuri by helicopter after landing at LBS International Airport at Babatpur by his special plane and address a public meeting where a few thousand people will remain present, maintaining social distance. The meeting at Khazuri will also be attended by Union Minister Nitin Gadkari and Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath.
He will dedicate to the people the 73-km-long six-lane Raja Talab-Handia road constructed at a cost of Rs 2,447 crore.