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Narendra Modi first prime ministerial candidate to run from Varanasi

New Delhi: Narendra Modi is the first prime ministerial candidate to stand in the 3,000-year-old city, where one in six voters are Muslim.Varanasi is an ancient centre of Buddhism; Hindus believe that to die here

India TV News Desk [ Updated: May 12, 2014 11:51 IST ]
narendra modi first prime ministerial candidate to run from
narendra modi first prime ministerial candidate to run from varanasi

New Delhi: Narendra Modi is the first prime ministerial candidate to stand in the 3,000-year-old city, where one in six voters are Muslim.


Varanasi is an ancient centre of Buddhism; Hindus believe that to die here brings salvation by escaping the cycle of reincarnation.

A triumph in the city - one of 41 seats in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and West Bengal which are voting on the final day of India's five-week general election - would crown a gruelling campaign by the 63-year-old chief minister of Gujarat to lead his Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) back to power after a decade in opposition.

Campaigning mainly on promises to create jobs and restore India to a path of high economic growth, Modi - whose critics accuse him of harbouring Hindu supremacist views - has largely steered clear of religion.

His oratory skills and high-tech campaign have made him a solid favourite in opinion polls to unseat the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty from New Delhi - and easily take Varanasi.

Modi "will win the election from this Varanasi constituency with a large majority", BJP President Rajnath Singh told reporters as campaigning wrapped up at the weekend. All other candidates would "lose their deposits".

Congress, which has lost popularity after a string of corruption scandals and a sharp economic slowdown, promises to extend welfare policies that helped it sweep into a second term five years ago.

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