Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be on a two-day visit to his home state Gujarat starting March 11 -- a day after results of the election in five states are declared. Gujarat goes to polls later this year and will be the next big electoral contest.
On Friday, PM Modi will address a big rally at Ahmedabad's GMDC grounds, sources said. His visit will also coincide with the beginning of the three-day All India Pratinidhi Sabha meeting of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, the ideological mentor of the BJP.The RSS is completing 100 years of its foundation and they will launch various programmes to celebrate the event. The RSS wants to expand its base and the target is to double the number of shakhas from the current 50,000.
The BJP has started preparations for the elections in December last year, with the party's state leaders priming up the workers for the contest ahead.
In 2017, the BJP faced a tough battle against the Congress re-energised by the newly elected party president Rahul Gandhi.
Though it won a sixth straight term in the state, the BJP fell far short of the 150-seat target set by Amit Shah in the 182-seat assembly. The party ended up with only 99 seats, 16 less than it held.
The Congress, on the other hand, secured 77 seats – up by 20 -- on a day of counting filled with twists and turns and several nail-biting moments.
This time, Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav has taunted the BJP even before the elections in his home state was held, saying the Uttar Pradesh elections will not throw a surprise result and the "real surprise" will be in Gujarat elections.
The people of Uttar Pradesh have already given their verdict and the BJP is "nervous", he said. The voters, he added, will teach a lesson to those who are honouring the killers of Mahatma Gandhi.
The exit polls have predicted a big win for the BJP in Uttar Pradesh. But the party is shown to be in close fight with the Congress in Goa and Uttarakhand -- two states it rules. In BJP-ruled Manipur, it is set to emerge as the largest party an aggregate of six exit polls indicated, just one below the majority mark.
In Punjab, it is predicted, the party will be far behind the Congress, which will finish second to Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party.
Exit polls are not always right. The results of the elections in the five states will be out tomorrow when the counting of votes takes place.