Ahmedabad: As Gujarat Chief Minister
Narendra Modi gears up for his one-day fast tomorrow in
Godhra, the town has virtually turned into a fortress.
Local BJP leaders expect a crowd of over 50,000,
including a big chunk from the town`s minority population, to
attend the event at the State Reserve Police (SRP) Ground in
Godhra, about 250 km from here, in Panchmahal district.
The fast, part of Modi`s `Sadbhavna (harmony) Mission`,
comes nearly a month before the 10th anniversary of Godhra
carnage where 59 people, mostly karsevaks, were killed when
the S-6 coach of Sabarmati Express train was burnt on February
27, 2002, triggering the worst-ever riots in Gujarat.
"Over 1,600 policemen have been deployed along with 50
specially trained Chetak commandos and other unarmed jawans
across the town," Panchmahal SP Sachin Bhadshah said.
"Security has been tightened in every part of the town.
Also, a three-layer security has been put in place at the fast
venue," he said, adding that CCTV cameras have been installed
at the ground and sensitive locations.
Panchmahal district BJP president Jayprakash Patel said
over 10,000 people have registered themselves to fast along
with the chief minister. An equal number have been shortlisted
to greet him on stage. "We expect over 50,000 people to attend
the Sadbhavna fast," Patel said.
He said there was no tension in the town following the
event and such talks were just "rumours". "Many programmes of
the Chief Minister have taken place in Godhra after 2002 and
nothing has happened. All talks about tension are hyped."
Patel denied reports that a special enclosure has been
built for the people of minority community to offer Friday