His party’s performance in Bihar key to his prime ministerial run, Narendra Modi on Saturday said he could sense a “public movement” and “resentment” building in the state, similar to what he had “watched in films”.
Modi met the families of four of the six persons killed in the Patna serial blasts during his October 27 rally in Gandhi Maidan — he could not visit two families in Supaul and Gopalganj because of bad weather and time constraint. His party paraded the ashes of the blast victims by bringing out a Shahid Asthi Kalash Yatra and offered a cheque of Rs 5 lakh to each family.
At Gaurichak, thousands gathered as Modi’s helicopter landed. Blast victim Rajnarayan Singh’s eldest son Ramvinod Singh said: “He spent five minutes with us and sat on the floor after paying tribute to my father. He has assured me a government job. He said he will do what he can.”
Speaking to reporters after visiting families in Patna, Begusarai, Kaimur and Nalanda, Modi said: “I wanted to meet the family of each victim but could not reach two families. If I get an opportunity in future, I will surely meet them. I thank and salute the people of Bihar.”
He praised the “patience and courage” of people who had gathered for his rally on October 27. “The world should watch this crowd behaviour. It is without parallel. Some university may think of a future study on this.”
Even a cow, he said, can trigger a stampede if it runs through a small crowd. But at Gandhi Maidan, people stood their ground in spite of the explosions and injuries, he said.
Bihar BJP leader Sushil Kumar Modi tweeted how Narendra Modi was moved when he was told that a pigeon sat next to the body of Bharat Rajak, who was killed in the blasts, and followed it to the cremation ground.
“Had Nitish Kumar made foolproof security during the rally, this visit by Narendra Modi would not have been necessary,” he said.