25/12/2014 8:12 AM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:24 AM IST

Narendra Modi In Varanasi On Christmas To Celebrate 'Good Governance Day'

A supporter of India's ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) holds up a mask of Prime Minister Narendra Modi during an election campaign rally in Kathua, about 90 kilometers from Jammu, India, Saturday, Dec.13, 2014. The final two phases of the five-phased state elections of Jammu and Kashmir will be held on Dec. 14 and 20. (AP Photo/Channi Anand)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will visit his Lok Sabha constituency Varanasi on Christmas to attend a number of programmes on the occasion of the birthday of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, which has been announced as 'Good Governance Day'.

Modi will visit Assi Ghat to inspect the progress of cleanliness drive launched by him last month, sources said here today. Modi, on November 8, had wielded a spade to remove silt deposited at the Assi Ghat along the banks of the Ganga as part of his 'Swachh Bharat' campaign.

The Prime Minister had worked through an uneven muddy track to reach a makeshift stage where five priests were waiting for him to assist him in a special Ganga puja.

Modi will also visit Banaras Hindu University (BHU) where he will lay the foundation stone for an inter-university centre for teachers' education to be named after Madan Mohan Malviya.

The centre is expected to function as an autonomous body, the details of which will be spelt out during the Prime Minister's visit to the campus.

At the BHU, Modi is also expected to launch Varanasi Mahotsav. While in Varanasi, the Prime Minister will also lay the foundation stone for expansion of the Diesel Locomotive Works factory.

Foundation stone for expansion of a stadium in the holy city will also be laid.

Meanwhile, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee came out strongly against the announcement of 'Good Governance Day' on Christmas saying "every day is good governance day". "If someone says burra din (Christmas) is Good Governance Day, I disagree. Every day is Good Governance Day", Banerjee said speaking at a Christmas-eve programme at St Xavier's College in Kolkata.

"This is not right. When I am in the chair I cannot discriminate on the basis of religion, caste or creed. Our unity is our strength", she said.

The Goa government said it will celebrate the Christmas holiday and not 'Good Governance Day' as mandated by the National Democratic Alliance government for Dec 25.

Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar said Goa had a unique synergy between Hindus and Christians and it was not possible to observe Good Governance Day and keep government offices open on Christmas day.

"We have informed high command that we will be unable to observe Good Governance Day on Dec 25. But we will do it (conduct programmes as per the central government initiative) before and after that day," Parsekar said.