Imphal, Jan 14 : The Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra began from Thoubal in Manipur on Sunday with a call by Congress President Malikarjun Kharge and former party chief Rahul Gandhi to end the politics of hatred and violence and start a new politics of debate and understanding.
Thousands attended the rally. though the Thoubal district Administration ordered the gathering to be limited to 3000.
Gandhi paid tribute at the Khongjom War memorial constructed in memory of the heroes of 1891 Anglo Manipur heroes before the launch of the yatra, which is slated to traverse over about 6,200 kilometres in 66 days.
Addressing the inaugural function after unveiling the vehicle for the yatra, Kharge said the country’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru had described Manipur as the jewel of India and it was the Congress that agreed to all the demands of the people generously.
The Congress party and Rahul Gandi are fighting for the people and it is a long struggle. Kharge said, appealing to all to respect the four pillars of the Constitution.
He said such a Yatra never happened in Indian history. He further said Prime Minister Narendra Modi came to seek votes but when the people of Manipur faced problems, Modi never visited the state.
“We should fight on issues – secularism, liberty, social justice, to save the Constitution but not instigate people on religious issues. The PM was speaking about Lord Ram but his actions are different,” said Kharge.
He said during the winter session 146 MPs were suspended. “By removing everyone they wanted to pass laws, a dictatorial attitude was seen to finish democracy,” he said.
“Rahul Gandhi wants justice for the people of Manipur. Why can’t the PM come to Manipur if he can visit the beach (at Lakshadweep).” he asked.
The rally is to awake the people of Manipur, make people aware about employment, sports and education which the central government is not thinking. “All projects have stopped, what is going on is only publicity,” he added.
The rally is for the common people, justice, education, to decrease the gap between the rich and the poor, to stop the sale of public sector units, and to save farmers, women wrestlers who were not given justice. “It is for those who are jailed for asking questions and to ask where are the 20 crore jobs assured by the Prime Minister,” Kharge said.
Gandhi apologised for making the people wait at Khongjom since early morning and assured to provide the people of Manipur with what they had before the crisis.