As Congress' Bharat Jodo Yatra entered its eighth day, party leaders led by Rahul Gandhi started the march from Kollam on Friday.
Kollam: Congress leader Jairam Ramesh said that if the Bharat Jodo yatra led by Rahul Gandhi from Kanyakumari to Kashmir turns successful then the party will go ahead with another yatra from Gujarat to Arunachal Pradesh.
As Congress’ Bharat Jodo Yatra entered its eighth day, party leaders led by Rahul Gandhi started the march from Kollam on Friday.
Jairam Ramesh indicated that the Bharat Jodo Yatra is not linked to the election campaigns in Gujarat and Himachal.
“We’ll cover nearly 3,100km in 150 days in the second phase. This is the longest march undertaken by any political party in the world. Earlier it was the one undertaken by Chinese leader Mao Zedong. If the yatra from Kanyakumari to Kashmir turns successful, we’ll go ahead with the one from Gujarat to Arunachal Pradesh,” AICC general secretary Jairam Ramesh said in Kollam.
Congress reacted after political parties questioned about taking the yatra from States where BJP is not predominant.
“Bharat Jodo or Seat Jodo? 18 days in Kerala, 2 days in UP. Strange way to fight BJP–RSS,” said a tweet by the CPM whose Pinarayi Vijayan heads Kerala’s Left Democratic Front (LDF) government. Kerala is the only state where the Left has a government. The CPM was the Congress’s election partner in the 2021 West Bengal Assembly election but the grand old party is the Left outfit’s principal opposition in the southern state.
Jairam Ramesh reacted to CPM and tweeted: “Do your homework better on how and why yatra was planned the way it is. And silly criticism from a party that is the A team of BJP in the land of MunduModi”.
The Yatra resumed today after a one-day break on September 15.
The yatra completed its seventh day on Wednesday which was started from Navayikkulam in Kerala’s Thiruvananthapuram.
On the seventh day, Rahul Gandhi interacted with students at Chathannur in the Kollam district.
“As we conclude the first week of Bharat Jodo Yatra today, with the distance covered and souls we connected with, our commitment grew stronger, our goal became clearer, and our family grew larger.
This is the power of truth; the power of oneness,” the Congress said.
Before starting the march from Navayikkulam, Rahul Gandhi paid his respects to social reformer Sree Narayana Guru at Sivagiri mutt in Kerala.
The Yatra is in its Kerala leg and would traverse through the state for the next 14 days.
The 3,500-km march from Kanyakumari to Kashmir will be completed in 150 days and cover as many as 12 states. From Kerala, the Yatra will traverse through the state for the next 18 days, reaching Karnataka on September 30. It will be in Karnataka for 21 days before moving north. The Padyatra (march) will cover a distance of 25 km every day.
Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday said that the spirit of the Bharat Jodo Yatra is to bring Indians together irrespective of religion, community and remind them that this is one country and it will be successful if we stand together and are respectful towards each other.
According to Congress, the ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’ is being held to combat the divisive politics of the BJP-led Centre and to awaken the people of the country to the dangers of economic inequalities, social polarisation, and political centralization.
The Yatra includes Padayatras, rallies, and public meetings which will be later attended by the senior Congress leaders including Sonia Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.
Notably, all the party MPs, leaders, and workers along with Rahul Gandhi are staying together. Sleeping beds, toilets, and ACs are also installed in some of the containers. During the journey, the temperature and environment will differ in many areas. The arrangements have been made keeping in view the intense heat and humidity with the change of place.
The Congress suffered a debacle in the assembly polls held earlier this year and the Yatra is seen as an attempt to rally the party rank and file for the upcoming electoral battles.