On farmers rally eve, ‘Ram Bhakt Rahul Gandhi will build Ram temple in Ayodhya’ banner put by Congress workers in Bhopal

The AICC president will address the farmers rally at the Jamboree Ground, which is also being seen as a symbolic kick-start of Lok Sabha polls campaign by the party in the Congress ruled states.

Published: 07th February 2019 10:00 PM  |   Last Updated: 07th February 2019 10:00 PM   |  A+A-

By Express News Service

BHOPAL: All India Congress Committee (AICC) President Rahul Gandhi was a ‘Shiv Bhakt’ when he embarked on road-show in Bhopal on September 17, 2018 ahead two months before the assembly elections in the then BJP-ruled Madhya Pradesh.

Four months later, the Congress president now visits the capital of Congress-ruled MP as Ram-Bhakt (devotee of Ram) on Friday to address a rally of farmers dubbed as Aabhar Sammelan at the sprawling Jamboree Maidan.

A banner put up by state Congress leaders near the Chetak Bridge in the heart of MP capital ahead of Congress president’s visit addresses Gandhi as a Ram Bhakt, who will build a grand Ram temple in Ayodhya with consensus.

“Sarvasammati se Ayodhya mein bhavya Ram Mandir banvayenge, aise Ram Bhakt Rahul Gandhiji ka  jheelon ki nagari Bhopal mein hardik abhinandan aur swagat hai,” mentions the banner, in which Chief Minister Kamal Nath is addressed as Hanuman Bhakt and Gau Bhakt (devotee of Hanuman and cow).

While the state Congress media in-charge Shobha Oza has termed the development as the heartfelt welcome of the Congress national president Rahul Gandhi by some over-enthusiastic Congress workers and leaders, the former CM Digvijaya Singh evaded questions about the banner and poster, saying “I’m against posters and garlands.”

Importantly, on September 17, 2018, when Gandhi embarked on a roadshow in Bhopal ahead of assembly polls just after returning from Kailash Mansarovar Yatra, posters and banners addressing him as Shiv Bhakt were put by Congress workers and leaders.

Reacting to the development, state BJP spokesperson Rajneesh Agrawal said, “Merely putting banners and posters won’t erase the anti-Hindutva statements and policies of previous Congress governments and party leaders. If the Congress is so committed at building Ram Temple in Ayodhya, it should first direct its advocates-turned-leaders to stop playing delaying tactics in the apex court during the ongoing hearing of the Ayodhya case.”

The AICC president will address the farmers rally at the Jamboree Ground on Friday, which is also being seen as a symbolic kick-start of Lok Sabha polls campaign by the party in the Congress-ruled state.

Some major pronouncements are likely to be made at the rally by CM Kamal Nath in pursuance with the promises made by the party in its Vachan Patra (assembly poll manifesto), including Rs 4,000 monthly unemployment allowance, 2% hike in DA for state government employees, doubling social security pension for elderly population from Rs 300 to Rs 600 and 100 days job guarantee scheme for urban youth.

Five-time former BJP MP and former MP minister, the powerful Kurmi community leader of Bundelkhand region Ramkrishna Kusmaria ‘Babaji,’ too is likely to join the Congress in presence of Gandhi at the rally. Kusmaria was expelled from BJP for six years in November 2018 for contesting as rebel candidate from Damoh and Pathariya seats, which played a definitive role in BJP defeats from both seats in recent assembly polls.

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