Prime Minister Narendra Modi told the nation this week he will be fasting for a day to protest over the washout of the just-concluded budget session of the parliament.
Media reports quoted several senior BJP leaders and Modi’s cabinet colleagues that they too will be joining the prime minister in observing the one-day fast. It was also added that the fast will not stop PM Modi from inaugurating the defence expo in Chennai, scheduled for Thursday.
“I will be fasting. PM Modi is also fasting. Fasting is not going to stop him from coming here (Chennai),” Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharam was quoted as saying.
Modi’s arrival in Chennai was, however, marred by unprecedented protests by local population, who showed black flags to the prime minister forcing him to cancel the road show and travel in a helicopter.
Modi was also forced to cancel his travel plan and a new itinerary was released, reportedly in view of the planned protests. In the revised itinerary, it was stated that Modi will have ‘Breakfast on Board) at 0640 hours and lunch at Chennai Airport, once again on board, at 1425 hours.
This provided the much-needed weapons to the Congress to mock Modi and his party, the BJP. The Congress party’s chief s;pokesperson, Randeep S Surjewala said sarcastically, “Dear Prime Minister, Greetings for your fast. Now tell us this is also a lie.”
प्रधानमंत्री जी, उपवास की शुभकामनाएँ।
अब कह भी दीजिए की ये झूठ है। pic.twitter.com/xok2dGRxzI
— Randeep Singh Surjewala (@rssurjewala) April 12, 2018
However, some reports said that the itinerary was prepared well in advance, before Modi announced his plans to fast for a day. The date on the revised itinerary was stated as 6 April, 2018.
(Our earlier story had wrongly implied that the the prime minister’s itinerary was prepared after his announcement to fast for one day. We’ve updated the story with adequate changes in the headline too)