Congress President Rahul Gandhi arrived in Uttar Pradesh's Amethi, his parliamentary constituency, on a two-day visit on Monday, where he is expected to address a meeting of 150 village heads.
Rahul commenced the Amethi visit by garlanding Lord Shiva’s portrait. Chants of “bol bam” by Congress supporters and party workers dressed as kanwars welcomed Rahul. Streets across the district were lined with hoardings welcoming “Shiv Bhakt Rahul Gandhi”. Donning a red-coloured scarf, his face was smeared with sandalwood paste and vermilion as he interacted with party supporters.
It is pertinent to mention that only last month, Congress President Rahul Gandhi had undertaken a Kailash Mansarovar Yatra to follow-up on a vow to himself in April when his plane plunged hundreds of feet and had a close shave during the campaign for the Karnataka polls.
The pilgrimage, which he said was aimed at seeking the blessing of Lord Shiva for the prosperity and success of the country and its people, took about 12 days, according to the Congress.
“We are all shiv bhakts, and that’s why many have also chosen to wear the traditional dress worn by kanwars. We all wanted to accord a grand welcome to him after the yatra,” said Dilip Kumar Sahu, a Congress worker to NDTV.
Rahul Gandhi’s visit to Amethi comes at a time when the party is tentative about a possible place in a grand alliance in Uttar Pradesh to take on the Bharatiya Janata Party in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. His visit to places of religious importance is also seen by many as an attempt to woo Hindu voters.