As Gujarat enters the last day of campaigning for the Gujarat Assembly elections, a series of political events are lined up across the state.
While Congress president-elect Rahul Gandhi
is scheduled to hold a press conference in Ahmedabad at 1 pm today, Prime Minister Narendra Modi
chose to board the single-engine sea-plane from near the Sardar Bridge connecting the old city with Ahmedabad West, the first-ever flight by such a craft in the country. The plane took off from the Sardar Bridge-end amid chants of "Modi-Modi" from BJP workers and other city dwellers, who flocked the Sabarmati Riverfront to witness this one-of-a-kind event.
Top 10 developments
1. Modi 1st passenger on sea-plane from Sabarmati river
Prime Minister Narendra Modi
is the first passenger to travel from Sabarmati river in the city to Dharoi dam in Mehsana district in a seaplane.
His return journey would also be by the same sea-plane.
2. Modi's tweet
A day ahead of the journey, the Prime Minister had tweeted, “Tomorrow at 9:30 am I will travel from Sabarmati River in Ahmedabad to Dharoi Dam via sea plane."
3. Rahul, Modi denied roadshow
The Ahmedabad police on Monday denied permission to the BJP and the Congress to hold road shows of Prime Minister Narendra Modi
and Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi
in the city, citing security and law and order concerns, traffic and inconvenience to the public.
Both leaders were expected to hold road shows in the city on the last day of campaigning on December 12.
4. Modi's Ambaji temple visit
Soon, Modi will be visiting and offering prayers at Ambaji in Banaskantha district via road.
5. "Our party had planned my road show tomorrow. However, the administration has not given permission and I had time so I decided to go to Ambaji in the sea-plane," Modi said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi
waves to the crowd as he boards a seaplane
on the Sabarmati river front in Ahmedabad on Tuesday. Photo: PTI
6. Sea planes for 125 crore Indians
PM Modi said, "with air, roads and rail connectivity, our government is making efforts for harnessing waterways. All this is for 125 crore Indians!”
"We cannot have airports everywhere, so our government has planned to have these sea-planes," Modi said.
7. Special jetty was constructed to facilitate the seaplane
Modi boarded the single-engine sea-plane from near Sardar Bridge connecting the old city with Ahmedabad West. A special jetty was constructed to facilitate the prime minister's boarding from the river.
The plane took off from the Sardar Bridge-end amid chants of "Modi-Modi" from BJP workers and other city dwellers, who flocked the Sabarmati Riverfront to witness the event.
8. Elect BJP so that Modi has choppers, Audi
Last week, former Gujarat chief minister Anandiben said at an election rally, "Have you seen three choppers at the same time? No prime minister of this country flew with three choppers. Vote for the BJP so that these three choppers remain with Narendrabhai."
9. Nothing political about seaplane ride
Commenting on Prime Minister’s seaplane
ride, Union minister Nitin Gadkari told ANI that the day is historic as the PM has travelled in a seaplane.
He added that it marks a big revolution in the transport sector of the country as India has huge potential.
The union minister also added that as per the rules and regulations, the Prime Minister can avail any transport facility and has nothing to do with the Gujarat Assembly elections 2017. He also said, “If Rahul Gandhi
wants he can also use it, no politics
10. Quest Kodiac plane
It is a small aircraft, can transport between nine and 15 people. It requires a runway length of just 300 metres for take-off and landing, and is equipped with floats that allow it to land on waterways. SpiceJet, which has proposed introducing seaplane
services in the country and is likely to make at least 10 planes operational in the next 12 months, is conducting trials of its 10-seater Kodiac. It plans to buy at least 100 aircrafts from Japanese firm Setouchi Holdings, each of which costs Rs 4 crore. The demonstration of the aircraft was recently held by Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari and Union Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju, along with other officials.
A seaplane, with Prime Minister Narendra Modi
onboard, takes off for Dharoi Dam from the Sabarmati river-front in Ahmedabad on Tuesday. Photo: PTI