BENGALURU: As Congress Legislature Party leader Siddaramaiah’s birthday bash gave a much-needed boost to party’s ranks, a series of rallies, including the ‘Swatantrotsava Amritotsava Padayatra’, planned across the state to mark the 75th anniversary of Independence and ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’ led by Congress senior leader Rahul Gandhi arriving in the state in September, are expected to give further fillip to the party ahead of the 2023 Assembly polls.
Despite it being a brainchild of KPCC president DK Shivakumar, Siddaramaiah too is actively taking part in the ‘padayatra’, participating in the events launched at Chintamani and Maluru Assembly segments of Chikkaballapur district on Saturday and at the Chamundeshwari constituency, which he lost in the 2018 Assembly polls, in Mysuru district on Sunday. This indicates that the two leaders have patched up to an extent after Rahul’s intervention.
Shivakumar has suggested to party leaders to organise at least 75 km of padayatra in their respective Assembly constituencies. Some leaders have already launched related events over the last one week to mobilise people for the valedictory in Bengaluru on August 15. The event at the National College Grounds is expected to witness over 1 lakh people from across the state.
Shivakumar’s supporters have gone the extra mile with Kunigal MLA Dr Ranganatha holding over a 150 km padayatra in his constituency and he is expected to mobilise a large number of party workers.
Similarly, Kusuma Hanumantharayappa, who was defeated in the Rajarajeshwari Nagar Assembly bypolls, has been taking out the padayatra, which resembles the election campaign. “I also organised cultural and sports events and contests for women and distributed gifts,” she said.
In Ramanagara, Congress ticket aspirant Iqbal has also launched a rally. But in places like Tumakuru city, it is yet to take off as there are many ticket aspirants and none ready to take up the initiative. Barring some flood-affected areas, padayatras have been organised by Congress leaders in all other places. The padayatra is helping leaders connect with their electorate directly, a Congress spokesperson said.