While Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s campaign blitzkrieg dominated the electioneering in Karnataka, a lesser-known aspect of his outreach has been his meetings with nearly 3,000 people — old and new party workers and prominent citizens — during his seven days of public meetings and roadshows in the state.
Sources said he met around 430 people on the last day of his campaign on Sunday while, a day earlier, he interacted with nearly 450 people. The prime minister has made it a point to meet people personally before and after rallies and flight trips, they added, noting that he had spoken with more than 300 people on May 5.
Overall, Modi addressed 18 rallies in the southern state and spoke to party members through a virtual interaction on April 27. He also led six roadshows — three in Bengaluru and one each in Mysuru, Kalaburagi and Tumakuru.
Sources said the selection of people who met him during the campaign was done meticulously to ensure a good mix of party workers, professionals and prominent citizens of the city. He also met Padma awardees during one of his such interactions.
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”These interactions are quite personal. His conversations with party members are also very significant. A lot of people tell him about their past interactions with him. Some people tell him that his or her father worked with him. If there is an old member he recognises, then he enquired about his or her families,” a source said.
When seasoned workers get to relive their old memories with Modi, this also helps strengthen their bond further with the party, sources said.
Photos of people meeting the prime minister personally often go viral in that city, they added.
Modi has spearheaded the BJP’s campaign as it pulls out all the stops to retain power in the state which has not elected the incumbent party to power since 1985. The BJP has expressed confidence of breaking the precedence while the opposition Congress has also run an intense campaign to come back to power. Polling to elect 224 members of the Karnataka assembly will be held on May 10 and the counting of votes will take place on May 13.