Muslim electric-rickshaw driver Rashid Ahmed is affectionately known as 'Our Modi' in his Delhi neighborhood due to his remarkable resemblance to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is seeking a third consecutive term in the general elections. If, as widely anticipated, Modi triumphs in the polls, which conclude on June 1 with vote-counting scheduled for June 4, he will be only the second person after Indian independence hero and first prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru to serve three consecutive terms.

'I have been like this from the beginning, but since Modi has become prime minister, there has been more discussion of it,' mentioned Ahmed, 60, whose white hair and trimmed beard, along with similar clothing, prompted the comparison.

Living with his wife, children, and grandchildren in a two-room home, Ahmed is a celebrity in the surrounding area, frequently interrupted at his daily tasks by visitors who want to meet him or take pictures with him. He is affectionately referred to as 'Modi uncle' by the children there, many of whom he drives to school every day.

'I thought, 'This is Modi', so why don't I meet him?' expressed a self-described fan of the prime minister, Seema, who sought Ahmed out for a chat in April, after spotting him following a visit to a city hospital.

Ahmed has also participated in rallies of Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) as a prime ministerial look-alike, exciting those in the crowd who initially mistook him for the leader. Such events have earned him about 1,000 rupees ($12) each, comparable to his earnings from his rickshaw driver's job each day.

'People do give us money (for the rallies) and we also have to take (it) because we are leaving work,' he added.

Rights and opposition groups have often accused Modi and his government of targeting the minority Muslim community, to which Ahmed belongs. Religion has also taken center stage in the current seven-phase elections, with Modi, in his speeches, accusing the main opposition Congress party of being pro-Muslim. Modi has denied such accusations, stating that he does not oppose Islam.

Ahmed believes it is not the prime minister but those on his party's lower rungs 'who divide religions.' 'The prime minister will listen to everyone, the good and the bad ... It is the people lower down who do wrong things and disgrace the party,' he said.

Ahmed is one of several prime ministerial look-alikes, from a businessman in the financial capital of Mumbai to a food vendor in Modi's western home state of Gujarat, to have featured in BJP campaigns. Party officials did not immediately respond to Reuters' telephone calls to seek comment.

Another Modi look-alike is Jagdish Bhatia, 68, who runs a real-estate business in a more affluent area of the capital and belongs to a spiritual sect independent of any religion. He says he does not accept money for attending BJP rallies, considering the task a 'social service,' as he appreciates Modi's vision.

'I really liked the way Modi worked, the things he did for the development of the country,' Bhatia added. 'That is why I like to be of some use to the party.'

Bhatia accentuates his similarity to Modi by altering his clothing style to match, though Ahmed dismisses his own resemblance to the leader as coincidental. 'Only time will tell,' Ahmed replied to a query about the election outcome. 'We just want that there should be good work ... development should happen on all sides ... everyone should be together.'