Congress president Rahul Gandhi has already visited several temples in Madhya Pradesh
With little over a month to go for elections in Madhya Pradesh, the BJP and the Congress are preparing the itineraries for their star campaigners – Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress president Rahul Gandhi respectively.
Temples will continue to feature prominently in Mr Gandhi's schedule. He has already performed pujas at the Kamtanath temple in Chitrakoot and Pitambara Peeth in Datia and a Narmada Aarti at Jabalpur. He is now likely to tour Malwa and Nimar regions in the western part of Madhya Pradesh. He will reach Indore on October 29 and directly head to the Mahakaleshwar temple in Ujjain followed by a public meeting in the city.
After that, he will conduct a roadshow in Dewas and come back to Indore for another roadshow that is reported to be 9.5 km long.
On October 30, Mr Gandhi is scheduled to go via Rau to visit Mhow, also known as Dr Ambedkar Nagar, which is the birthplace of Dr BR Ambedkar. His next destination is likely to be Janapav, the birthplace of Parashurama, the sixth avatar of Lord Vishnu. Parashurama is considered an iconic figure for Brahmins.
The Congress president's back-to-back visits to the birthplaces of Dr Ambedkar and Parashurama are significant given the mobilisation by upper caste and Dalit organisations in Madhya Pradesh.
In the final lap of this visit, Mr Gandhi is scheduled to address public meetings in tribal-dominated Jhabua and Khargone, which has a significant Muslim population.
On the other hand, the ruling BJP is also finalising Prime Minister Narendra Modi's schedule in Madhya Pradesh. He is expected to address 10 rallies in almost every region of the state. Most of his rallies will be after November 5-6. There will be a focus on areas where the BJP is in a weaker position compared to the Congress so that the party benefits by the presence of its star campaigner.
Voting in all 230 seats of Madhya Pradesh will take place on November 28. The results will be declared on December 11 along with the other poll-bound states Chhattisgarh, Mizoram, Rajasthan and Telangana.