The sports department of Meghalaya denied permission to the BJP to host an election rally of Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the PA Sangma Stadium in Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma’s home constituency of South Tura, citing construction work at the venue.
The BJP, fuming over the development, alleged that the ruling National People’s Party (NPP), along with the Trinamool Congress and other opposition parties, were trying to stall a 'wave of the BJP' in the state.
The PM was scheduled to campaign in Shillong and Tura on February 24.
'The sports department has communicated that it will not be fit to host such a big gathering at the stadium as construction work is still going on and materials kept at the site may be of safety concerns. Therefore, an alternate venue, the Alotgre cricket stadium, is being considered,' District Election Officer Swapnil Tembe told PTI.
The stadium, built at a cost of Rs 127 crore, was inaugurated by the chief minister on December 16 last year.
BJP national general secretary Rituraj Sinha said he was amused how a stadium can be declared 'incomplete and unavailable' for the PM's rally just two months after inauguration.
'Is Conrad Sangma and Mukul Sangma scared of us? They are trying to stall the BJP's wave in Meghalaya. You can try and stop PM's rally but the people of the state have made up their minds (to support the BJP),' he said.
Sinha asserted that seeing people's response to rallies of Union Home Minister Amit Shah and other star campaigners of the BJP, other parties have been taken aback.
Senior BJP leader AL Hek said the PM will hold a roadshow in Pynthorumkhrah constituency in Shillong on February 24.
Meghalaya goes to polls on 27 February. Almost all of the 60 Assembly constituencies will see a contest between former partners in government, the NPP and the BJP.
Inputs from PTI.
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