Prime Minister Narendra Modi will on Sunday visit poll-bound Gujarat for a third time this month. Besides inaugurating and lay foundation stones for a number of projects in Bhavnagar and Vadodara districts, the prime minister will also address people in Vadodara. Commenting on PM's frequent Gujarat visits ahead of Assembly polls there, the Opposition questioned the Election Commission's decision of not announcing the dates.
Modi will inaugurate the first phase of the Rs 615-crore roll-on roll-off (ro-ro) ferry service between Ghogha in Bhavnagar district and Dahej in Bharuch in the Gulf of Cambay.
The prime minister had called ferry service his "dream project" while addressing a gathering at Gandhinagar on Monday.
He will address a gathering in Ghogha and undertake a journey to Dahej from Ghogha on the ferry. From Dahej, he will leave for Vadodara, where he is scheduled to inaugurate and lay the foundation stones for projects worth over Rs 1,140 crore.
Ajay Bhadoo, Chief Executive Officer of Gujarat Maritime Board, which is executing the ro-ro project, said the first phase of the service to be inaugurated by Modi on Sunday is meant for passengers.
In the second phase, which would be ready in two months, cars can also be carried between the two towns.
"It is a complex project which involves the complicated marine structure of the Gulf of Cambay, on which it is built. The service reduces the distance between the two towns from 310 kilometers by road to 30 kilometers which can be covered in 1 hour," Bhadoo said.
Modi had laid the foundation stone for the project in January 2012, when he was the chief minister of Gujarat.
In Vadodara, Modi will eight different projects worth Rs 1,140 crore.
Vadodara Municipal Commissioner Vinod Rao said Modi will dedicate to people a Rs 100 crore city command and control centre in Badamadi Garden, Rs 125-crore Janmahal city transport hub and multi-level parking (under PPP), a Rs 160 crore multi-modal city transport hub, Rs 267 crore waste-to-energy processing plant.
The other projects are a Rs 166 crore water treatment plant, two flyovers collectively worth Rs 265 crore, a Rs 55 crore deer safari park, and a Rs 6 crore veterinary hospital.
He will also address people at Navlakhi compound in Vadodara.
Modi had last visited Vadodara, a constituency from where he contested the 2014 Lok Sabha election and won by a record margin, on October 22 last year to inaugurate a new airport terminal building and distribute assistance devices to the divyangjan (specially-abled) people.
The Prime Minister had visited Gujarat on Monday this week when he addressed the BJP workers at a rally in Gandhinagar.
Prior to that, Modi had visited his hometown Vadnagar on October 8 and also inaugurated and laid foundation stones of various projects in Rajkot, Vadnagar, Gandhinagar, and Bharuch. He has been frequently visiting the state, which goes to polls in December this year.
Opposition reacts to Modi's Gujarat focus
Taking a dig at the Election Commission, which is yet to announce the dates for the Gujarat Assembly polls, giving Prime Minister Narendra Modi the opportunity to declare "freebies" before the model code of conduct kicks in, former Union minister and Congress leader P Chidambaram tweeted: "EC has authorised PM to announce date of Gujarat elections at his last rally (and kindly keep EC informed)."
EC will be recalled from its extended holiday after Gujarat Govt has announced all concessions and freebies.— P. Chidambaram (@PChidambaram_IN) October 20, 2017
EC has authorised PM to announce date of Gujarat elections at his last rally (and kindly keep EC informed).— P. Chidambaram (@PChidambaram_IN) October 20, 2017