STOCK MARKET BSE NSE

PM Modi taking India backwards, says Rahul Gandhi

The BJP people are trying to spread fire and violence in the entire country and only the force of lovable Congress workers and leaders can stop them, Rahul said further.

Published: 16th December 2017 10:46 PM  |   Last Updated: 17th December 2017 07:55 AM   |  A+A-

Rahul Gandhi's maiden speech as Congress President. (Twitter Photo | @OfficeOfRG)

NEW DELHI: Fresh yellow motichur laddoos vanished in a jiffy from the paper carton s that Delhi Congress leader Jai Prakash brought to 24 Akbar Road on Saturday morning. At the Congress party’s national headquarters, the mood was festive even though the crowds assembled for the chronicle of a coronation foretold.

Dancers from Rajasthan swayed to drumbeats as thousands converged at the venue to watch a clean-shaven Rahul Gandhi don the mantle of party chief.

Party managers worried if they would be able to manage the crowds. In the event, the Delhi Police, which manned the two traffic roundabouts full of banners and flags congratulating Rahul, permitted only pedestrians.

Veterans S. Jaipal Reddy and Meira Kumar were among senior leaders who could not enter the venue despite being invited.

Rahul put his agenda upfront. “The Congress took India to the 21st century, but the Prime Minister (Narendra Modi) is taking us backwards, to medieval times, where people are being butchered because of who they are, beaten for what they believe and killed for what they eat,” he said in his acceptance speech.

“Today, the BJP people are trying to spread fire and violence in the entire country and only the force of lovable Congress workers and leaders can stop them. They break, we unite. They ignite fire, we douse it. They get angry, we love. This is the difference between them and us,” Rahul said.

The crowd was building despite the cold and the smog. Party managers had to intervene to fetch veterans like BK Hari Prasad, K Venugopal, Asha Kumari and Girija Vyas.

Navjot Singh Sidhu walked in through the VIP gate that is only opened only for Sonia and Rahul as it connects Sonia’s residence 10 Janpath to 24 Akbar Road.

Close to 10.30 am, Ahmed Patel, Janardan Dwivedi and Motilal Vora escorted Sonia, Rahul and former PM Manmohan Singh through the VIP gate to the dais in a corner of the lawns that were covered with a huge tent.

Rahul looked confident and cheerful. As Sonia rose to speak, someone outside lit crackers that burst through her words.

Elated over the response to his Gujarat campaign, Congress president-elect Rahul Gandhi wants to have an early start in Congress-ruled Karnataka, where Assembly polls will be held by April 2018.

Gandhi is likely to launch his multi-phased Karnataka poll campaign, which would be a mix of street corner meetings, community interactions and public rallies, by December end, a senior AICC functionary told The Sunday Standard, adding that the state unit had been asked to suggest the areas Rahul should visit and the routes he should take in the run-up to the Assembly polls.

In the first major state poll test after Rahul takes over as Congress president, the party managers do not want to take any chances, as Karnataka is the only big state ruled by the grand old party. However, the Karnataka campaign may not be a replica of the Gujarat model, where Rahul became the face of the party to counter PM Modi’s blitzkrieg in his home state.

“Gujarat was a different case; we were in the Opposition there. Here we have a strong state leadership to enhance the impact of Rahulji’s campaign,” Karnataka Congress working president Dinesh Gundu Rao told The Sunday Standard.

Rahul has already got the Karnataka unit working. Chief Minister K Siddaramaiah, who will lead the Congress charge, will cover around 100 of the 224 assembly constituencies during his month-long tour from December 13, 2017 to January 13, 2018. State unit chief G Parameshwara, along with two working presidents, Dinesh Gundu Rao and S R Patil, will take care of the remaining seats, said sources.

Senior leaders will launch poll yatras from four different corners of the state on December 16, the day Rahul takes over the reins of the party from his mother Sonia Gandhi. Siddaramaiah, who was not able to attend the event in New Delhi, led a party delegation to congratulate Rahul Gandhi on December 12, the day the latter wrapped up his Gujarat campaign.

Sources said Rahul set his eyes on the southern state in April this year, when he replaced AICC Karnataka in-charge Digvijaya Singh with his aide and party lawmaker K Venugopal to prepare the state unit for the 2018 Assembly polls.

Over the past few months, Venugopal has asked the state unit to launch booth-level voter connect programmes and plug any organisational gaps.

Pool Charge

Chief Minister K Siddaramaiah, who will lead the Congress charge, will cover around 100 of the 224 assembly constituencies during his month-long tour from December 13, 2017 to January 13, 2018. State unit chief G Parameshwara, along with two working presidents, Dinesh Gundu Rao and S R Patil, will take care of the remaining seats.



Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp