Sonia stops convoy, accepts bouquet from wheelchair bound man (Second Lead, superseding earlier story)

May 7th, 2009 - 5:23 pm ICT by IANS  

Sonia Gandhi New Delhi, May 7 (IANS) He waited in a wheelchair since early morning as he had in several elections earlier with lilies in hand, and it paid off. Congress president Sonia Gandhi recognised him and stopped on her way home from voting Thursday to accept the bouquet from the long-time party supporter, sending her security personnel into a tizzy.
Gandhi was returning home after casting her vote at Nirman Bhawan when she recognised the man who has greeted her with flowers in previous elections as well. She immediately asked her cavalcade to stop, stepped out of her bulletproof vehicle and accepted the flowers from Ashok Nagpal, who waved at her with orange lilies in one hand and a tricolour in the other.

There was a flurry of activity among the security personnel in Gandhi’s entourage as mediapersons rushed in her direction. The Special Protection Group (SPG) personnel jumped out of their cars and encircled her immediately.

“I have been coming here during all elections and giving a bouquet to Sonia Gandhi. Now, she recognises me. I had been waiting here since early morning. I knew she was coming to vote,” Nagpal, 42, a resident of Patel Nagar in west Delhi, told IANS.

“I am not a Congress worker but I have been roaming throughout the city on my wheelchair asking people to vote for the Congress,” he said.

Her son Rahul Gandhi cast his vote at a polling station at Aurangzeb Lane amid media frenzy, though he managed to find time to chat with fellow voters.

His sister Priyanka Gandhi has been giving her SPG personnel a tough time, breaking from set campaign routes to reach out to village folk, hugging them or giving a friendly handshake in Uttar Pradesh while campaigning.

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