Last Tuesday, a surprise visitor climbed the broken steps that lead up to 'Hotel Modern' in Varanasi. Around 4.30 pm, Congress chief Sonia Gandhi, who had suddenly taken ill during campaigning for the upcoming UP elections, entered the budget hotel to use the washroom, reported The Telegraph.
The owner of the hotel, Surendra Singh, then opened their best room—priced at ₹950 and equipped with a double bed and AC—for Gandhi, who was feeling ill and needed to lie down. The room, which was in use by a personal guest of Singh's, was cleared for the 69-year-old political leader.
Singh described to Telegraph how he opened the room using a master key, as the actual key was with his guest, who was not in the hotel at the time. His luggage was quickly stowed away in a cupboard before the Congress leader entered the room.
As per the TravelGuru listing of the hotel, it is close to the railway station. It is reportedly about six decades old.
Gandhi spent two hours at the hotel before leaving for Delhi, where her condition is said to be stable.