Poll build-up brings political biggies to TN

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July 27, 2015 CHENNAI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to visit Tamil Nadu on August 7 for the first time after assuming office. Official sources said he is expected in the city on August 7 to launch the 'India Handloom' brand at a convention of handloom weavers to be held at the centenary hall of the Madras University.

He is likely to declare August 7 as national handloom day to commemorate this day in 1905 when the Swadeshi Movement was launched in order to promote genuine and global quality indigenously manufactured products in international markets.

Sources said that union textiles minister Santosh Gangwar had sent a proposal in this regard to the PM recently.

Barring a brief halt at the city airport on his way to Sriharikota for an ISRO launch, this would be Modi's first visit to Tamil Nadu as PM.

"PM has preferred to declare the national handloom day in Chennai," a senior official said. However, BJP state unit leaders said that they have not received any official communication from the PMO.

Textile ministry sources said that several distinguished handloom weavers and eminent personalities would be invited to the event. At the event, national awards also likely to be presented to distinguished handloom manufacturers and workers.

"Union textile ministry officials are expected in Chennai on Monday and will have discussions with them," a senior state secretariat official said. The program will be finalized only after the discussion and security check ups," the official said.

Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa is also likely to be invited to the event as per the protocol, he added.

A senior BJP leader said that Modi has been visiting different states since he assumed charge as PM.

"Especially he prefers to visit non-BJP government ruled states which are facing assembly elections in the near future," he said alluding to Modi's visits to West Bengal and Bihar.

Modi's visit to Tamil Nadu and Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi's public meeting and interactions with delegations of farmers organizations in Trichy on July 23 are pointers to more visits by national leaders to the state ahead of the assembly elections.

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