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Rahul Yatra Day 29: Sonia joins march, crowds highest since Karnataka leg began

Rahul interacted with families of farmers, including widows of three who died by suicide reportedly due to debts

Sonia Gandhi along with Rahul Gandhi during Bharat Jodo Yatra in Karantaka. (PTI)

Congress president Sonia Gandhi joined top party leader and her son Rahul Gandhi’s Bharat Jodo Yatra in Mandya district Thursday, which marked the 7th day of the Karnataka leg of the Yatra.

Sonia,75, joined Rahul and other Congress marchers about a kilometre from Bellale where the foot march started at around 8.30 am. She walked for about a km before Rahul asked her to travel by car for a distance. However, she joined the march again for about a km from Jakkanahalli to Chowdenhalli, where the first half of the day’s march ended. She then left for Delhi.

Amid cheers and slogan-shouting by Congress workers, Sonia walked beside Rahul who was seen tying her shoelaces and putting a protective arm around her.

This was the 29th day of the Rahul-led countrywide Yatra, with the march across the Pandavapura and Nelamangala constituencies in the Vokkaliga heartland of Mandya drawing huge crowds, even as it stretched for more than a km.

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Local Congress workers and supporters from various villages joined the Yatra through which it passed, even as party activists were also ferried from various constituencies of Bengaluru Urban district for the march.

Hundreds of Congress workers had lined up along the streets during the Yatra, which drew one of its biggest crowds since it entered the poll-bound Karnataka on September 30. People were also seen atop buildings and buses waving at Rahul and clicking his pictures.

Sonia,75, joined Rahul and other Congress marchers about a kilometre from Bellale where the foot march started at around 8.30 am. (Express photo by Jithendra M)

The Yatra resumed Thursday after a two-day break, culminating at Brahmadevarahalli of Nagamangala taluk for the day. It is supposed to cover a distance of 511 kms in 21 days across eight districts of Karnataka.

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During the lunch break, Rahul interacted with the families of sugarcane, paddy and dairy farmers. Among them were widows of three farmers who died by suicide reportedly due to their mounting debts.

Detailing this interaction at a corner meeting held at Brahmadevanahalli, Rahul said one of the women participants told him that her husband had borrowed money at 24% interest rate. “I was then thinking what sort of country is this where the richest are allowed to borrow at 6% while farmers have to borrow at 24%,” he said.

Hundreds of Congress workers had lined up along the streets during the Yatra, which drew one of its biggest crowds since it entered the poll-bound Karnataka on September 30. (PTI)

Taking a dig at the BJP-led Karnataka government, Rahul told the gathering that the state was yet to repeal the three controversial farm laws, which were withdrawn by the Central government after a year-long farmer protests. “These laws are designed to create thousands and thousands of widows in the state,” he alleged.

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Rahul charged that two Indias were being created under the BJP dispensation, pointing to the second richest person in the world being an Indian despite the country having the largest population of poor people. “While one India is walking from Kanyakumari to Kashmir, peacefully, affectionately and with humility,” he said, “there is another India of a few people with unlimited wealth, they can have anything they want but the youth cannot find jobs.”

First published on: 06-10-2022 at 10:09:36 pm
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