Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhis rally in Jaisinghpur a BJP stronghold,as the party had won from the area for the last 15 years turned out to be a damp squib.
The people brought by party workers from Shimla,Baijnath,Kangra and other places in buses were made to wait for over three hours,before Rahul finally arrived at the rally venue. While Rahul was scheduled to arrive at Saliana villages Chinj ground in Panchrukhi at 12 noon,he managed to reached the venue only around 2.55 pm. The supporters,however,had gathered at the venue at 11 am.
In an effort to ensure that people do not leave the venue,over 10 speakers addressed the gathering and slammed the BJP. From MNREGA to one-rank-one-pension to FDI,the leaders spoke on everything but did not address local issues.
However,the moment Rahul completed his five-six minutes address,people started rushing out of the venue. We started from Shimla in the morning. On the way,we were provided food. Now,he (Rahul) has spoken and we will be return in the same buses that brought us here, said Kirhori Lal,a Shimla resident.
Dhan Singh,a Palampur resident,said: Hamare to gaon ki sadak ban jaye,hamne kya lena hai,koi bhi sarkaar aaye (We only want roads to be constructed in our village,we have nothing to do with the government that comes to power).
The Congress youth candidate,Yadvendra Goma who is contesting for the first time from Jaisinghpur did not address the gathering. Before Rahuls arrival,though Goma was invited on the stage twice,but did not come on the stage. Even after Rahuls arrival,Goma did not speak.
The crowd,who were wooed by Congress stalwarts like Rahul,Birender Singh and Anand Sharma to vote for Goma,could not even see who Goma was. How can they expect us to vote for somebody who did not have time to come on stage and address the people of his own constituency? asked Shankar Das,a local.
However,Goma told The Indian Express: I could not address the people because I had gone to receive Rahul Gandhi at the helipad.