Aiming to corner the Yogi Adityanath government as well as the Centre on farmers’ issues and the problem of unemployment, the Congress will begin a “haq mango abhiyan” (fight-for-right) yatra across Uttar Pradesh from tomorrow. The march, which will cover all the 75 districts of Uttar Pradesh, will start from Aligarh. The party has coined slogans like “na karzmafi, na rozgar ka mauka, prachand bahumat, phir bhi prachand dhokha” (no loan waiver, no jobs; a massive betrayal after a massive mandate), for the yatra. The march will be led by state Congress chief Raj Babbar and other senior leaders will be joining it in the later phases, party general secretary and spokesman Dwijendra Tripathi told PTI today. According to sources, Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi too might join the yatra in the later phases as he is abroad presently to meet his grandmother.
“The yatra is being taken out at the behest of the party vice president in order to highlight the plight of farmers and the youth and how they have been hoodwinked by this government which had promised loan waiver and jobs,” Tripathi said. Farmers today are forced to commit suicides and the youth have to migrate to other areas as the promises made to the BJP have remained unfulfilled, he said. Against the promise of two crore jobs annually, a mere 1.35 lakh have been provided in the three years of the Modi government, Tripathi. “At this rate, it will take 500 years to remove unemployment and many generations will go jobless in the process,” he said.
The Congress vice president has always been at the forefront in highlighting the problems of farmers. He had also made an attempt to go to Mandsaur to express solidarity with them but the powers at the helm did not like it, Tripathi said. “Farmers today are on a warpath not only in Madhya Pradesh but also in Baghpat (western UP), Haryana, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh and we are a national party and it is our duty to stand with them in their fight for their rights,” he said. During the yatra, party leaders and workers will interact with the locals, hold panchayats and public meetings to get to know about their problems and tell them that the Congress was with them, he said.
In the first phase, the state president will personally visit 17 districts to highlight the plight of the farmers, youth and the unkept promises of the BJP government. Babbar had earlier sent a letter to all district chiefs of the party asking them to establish contact with farmers in their area and hold protests to raise their issues in a “Gandhian” manner. In the letter, he alleged that due to the state government’s “insensitive approach”, farmers have to face cane-charge or firing during their protests.
“You should also get in touch with farmers’ organisations in your respective districts so that we can unitedly raise their problems and start a movement,” Babbar had said in the letter expressing hope that the party’s district units would provide momentum to the campaign.