Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav on Friday sought the blessings of Lord Hanuman at a temple near Lucknow-Rae Bareli as he started the seventh leg of his 'Samajwadi Vijay Yatra' from Rae Bareli ahead of the Uttar Pradesh assembly elections early next year.
In a tweet in Hindi, Yadav wrote the final 'dohaa' of Hanuman Ashtak (eight stanza prayer dedicated to Lord Hanuman), and also posted his photographs at the Hanuman temple. "With the blessings of Lord Hanuman, and with His glimpse, the Samajwadi Vijay Yatra started from Rae Bareli," he said in a tweet in Hindi.
SP spokesperson and MLC Sunil Singh Sajan told PTI that this is the seventh leg of the Samajwadi Vijay Yatra. "SP chief Akhilesh Yadav visited the Hanuman temple in Churuva in Bachhrawan assembly constituency in Rae Bareli district, and sought blessings of Lord Hanuman before the commencement of the seventh leg of the Samajwadi Vijay Yatra," he said. The temple is located close to Lucknow-Rae Bareli border.
Friday's visit to Rae Bareli by Yadav also assumes significance as it comes a day before the padyatra of Congress general secretary Priyanaka Gandhi Vadra and his brother Rahul Gandhi in the neighbouring district of Amethi. Both Rae Bareli and Amethi are considered to be bastions of the Congress.
The Churuva Hanuman temple has been one of the favourite halts of politicians while going to Rae Bareli from Lucknow. Both Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi have visited the temple on their way to Amethi and Rae Bareli. In January 2018, after becoming the Congress president, Rahul Gandhi had visited the temple while on his way to Amethi from Lucknow during a two-day tour.
In September this year, Priyanka Gandhi began a two-day tour of her mother's parliamentary constituency by making her first pit stop at the Hanuman temple, and offered prayers.