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From PM Modi in Kashmir to Yogi in Ayodhya: How leaders celebrated Diwali

PM Modi on Thursday celebrated Diwali with troops posted along the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir's Gurez Sector

BS Web Team | Agencies  |  New Delhi 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi offers sweets to jawans on the occasion of Diwali, at Gurez Valley , Jammu and Kashmir. Photo: PTI
Prime Minister Narendra Modi offers sweets to jawans on the occasion of Diwali, at Gurez Valley , Jammu and Kashmir. Photo: PTI

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Defence Minsiter Nirmala Sitharaman, and Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani celebrated with the troops, while Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath celebrated the in a Dalit colony in Gorakhpur and visited the disputed Ram Janmabhumi site in Ayodhya. 

Meanwhile, in Etawah, Samajwadi Party patron Mulayam Singh Yadav, president Akhilesh Yadav, and Shivpal Yadav were seen together on the occasion. Mulayam said that "all is well and there is not any feud in the family".

Here is how Indian leaders celebrated the festival 

PM Modi visits his 'family' at the LoC

PM Modi on Thursday celebrated Diwali with troops posted along the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir's Sector and lauded the soldiers for their penance and sacrifice saying he considers them his family. (Read more here

In an unannounced visit, Modi arrived at Thursday morning to celebrate Diwali with the Army and Border Security Force (BSF) soldiers posted along the LoC, officials said.

He spent two hours with the soldiers in valley, which is shouting distance from Pakistan-occupied Kashmir and has witnessed many gunfights with infiltrating militants in the past 27 years.

This is the fourth successive Diwali that the prime minister has celebrated with jawans on the border.

Sitharaman spends Diwali in Andaman

The defence minister celebrated Diwali with military personnel at the strategically important tri-services command on the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. (Read more here)

Sitharaman, who arrived at the command on Wednesday, also reviewed its security preparedness and other operational matters.

The defence minister also paid homage to the Indian Air Force personnel and their families who were killed during the Tsunami in the Car Nicobar islands.

She also visited a naval facility and the Coast Guard base under the Andaman and Nicobar command.

Rupani celebrates Diwali with BSF jawans

The Gujarat chief minister celebrated Diwali with BSF jawans at a border outpost near Lakhpat in Kutch district. (Read more here

Rupani assured the jawans of facilities like drinking water and mobile connectivity. 

Rupani and his wife, Anjali, visited the floating border outpost (BOP) at Sir Creek in the Arabian Sea along the Indo-Pak border and also addressed a group of BSF personnel in the presence of Inspector General Ajay Tomar. 

He said his government will ensure amenities like drinking water and mobile connectivity as well as air coolers in the jawans' barracks. 

"I wish you all the very best. ...We are all one family, and it is a great feeling to celebrate Diwali among family members. I saw floating BOP, how you are working in the ocean. Even in tough situation a BSF jawan conducts his duty with great dedication, risking his life," he said. 

After visiting Ram Janmabhumi site, Yogi spends Diwali at Dalit colony

Adityanath on Thursday celebrated Diwali at the Tikonia Vantangiya Dalit colony in his former parliamentary constituency of Gorakhpur, officials said. (Read more here)

Mingling with the people of the Vantangiya tribe, Adityanath gifted the children dresses, school bags, sparkling lights (firecrackers) and sweets. He wished them a bright future.

The chief minister also gifted certificates to heads of five villages, declaring their villages as revenue villages.

On Thursday, Adityanath also visited the disputed Ram Janmabhumi site, a day after the mega pre-organised by his government in the temple town of Ayodhya. (Read more here)

Speaking to reporters after the visit, Adityanath said that Ayodhya was his personal belief and Opposition parties had no right to question him on it. 

On the second day of his visit to the town, Adityanath, after having stayed for the night at the Faizabad circuit house, offered prayers at the Hanumangarhi temple before going to the Ram Janmabhumi site. 

Later, speaking to media persons, the priest-turned-politician said, "Ayodhya is my personal belief and it is my duty to develop Ayodhya." 

Referring to Opposition parties, he said they had no right to raise questions on it (his personal belief). 

I have given instructions for complete cleanliness and hygiene for the temple town, he added. 

"By celebrating a grand Diwali in Ayodhya, I have not started a new practice but it is an age-old tradition here to celebrate the homecoming of Lord Rama," he said. 

First Published: Fri, October 20 2017. 08:24 IST