Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday is scheduled to meet the religious head of Dawoodi Bohra community, Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin, at a mosque in Indore, Madhya Pradesh. He will also address the community members gathered at the mosque after his meeting, officials said.
According to the officials, PM Modi will meet Saifuddin at the Saifi Nagar mosque in the city where the head of the community has been holding a nine-day religious discourse since Wednesday.
The prime minister is likely to address members of the community gathered at the mosque after his meeting, they said.
According to the schedule, the prime minister will reach Indore at 11 am and venue at 11.30 am. After wrapping his meet and address, the PM will depart from the venue at noon, reach Indore airport at 12.30 pm and fly back for the capital at 12.35 pm.
Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan, Madhya Pradesh Governor Anandiben Patel and Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan will also be present during Modi's visit.
Dawoodi Bohras are a sect within Shia Islam. Thousands of community members have arrived here from various parts of the world to hear their religious head's sermons. Around 2.5 lakh Dawoodi Bohras are estimated to live in the state, mainly in Indore, Ujjain and Burhanpur districts.
In view of the prime minister's visit, security has been ramped up, Indore range Deputy Inspector General of Police H C Mishra said. Police would employ drone cameras to keep an eye over the city along with 150 CCTV cameras, he said. About 3,500 policemen have been deployed in the city, Mishra added.
PM Modi's visit to the poll-bound state is being seen by political pundits as an attempt to give a fillip to the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) push to retain power in the state. The prime minister's visit also assumes significance as Assembly polls are due by year-end.
BJP has given signals of Muslim outreach in Maharashtra with the appointments of Haider Azam and Haji Arafat Shaikh, as chairman of the Maulana Azad Minorities Financial Development Corporation and the state minorities commission respectively. These steps are being seen as the BJP’s renewed effort to reach out to the minorities especially Muslims in the run-up to the 2019 elections.