Starting off the yatra from the Delhi-Gurgaon border on Tuesday morning, AICC general secretary Ghulam Nabi Azadsaid, “It’s time to teach a lesson to BJP for sowing seeds of discord,” adding BJP has destroyed farmers and duped the youth by promising them jobs. Even the state government’s most publicised slogan, ‘Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao’, has failed to usher in change, he said.
After stops at Rajiv Chowk, Badshapur and Sohna in the city, the yatra travelled through Nuh, Tauru, Daruhera, Bawal, Naiwali, Kund, Ateli, Mirzapur and Narnaul.
Addressing a meeting at Rajiv Chowk, he said, “Not only has demonetisation and GST destroyed small businesses and industries, they have brought suffering to every citizen. Citizens have gained nothing from the BJP government’s empty promises, barring greater social rifts,” adding, “Parivartan Yatra begins in Haryana from today. The whole country wants to replace the BJP government in the Centre.”
Criticising the Narendra Modi government, he said that in the five years it has been in power, the government has only caused disappointment among farmers and youth, adding unemployment has increased, while nothing has been done to empower women. Azad also claimed that since BJP came to power in the state, Haryana turned “violent”.
Senior Congress leader and Rohtak MP, Deepender Singh Hooda, told TOI BJP has failed to deliver the promises it made to woo voters in the last general elections. “Instead, BJP’s divisive politics has pushed the state backward in the last five years, leaving Congress the responsibility of offering people the alternative,” said Hooda.
He said the Yatra is aimed at making people aware of BJP’s politics of ‘divide and lies’, and encourage them to get rid of the misgovernance. With Lok Sabha electionsacross the state scheduled on May 12, he promised that the leaders will hold public meetings to uplift the morale of party workers.
On factionalism in the party, Deepender said leaders will present an united front to take on BJP in the forthcoming elections. “There might be differences of opinion on organisational matters, but there is no factionalism as far as ideology is concerned. That’s why all senior leaders have come together for this yatra, organised by the coordination committee under the leadership of the former CM,” he said, adding, “I hope minor differences are resolved and the party gets victory in the polls.”
Finally, former CM Bhupinder Singh Hooda launched an all-out attack against the BJP government. “Haryana’s farmers are not getting a fair price for their produce. The government has put several pre-conditions on crops already covered under MSP. Prices of fertilizers have gone up, while their package weight has gone down, making it twice the loss for farmers. Tractor parts, fertilizers, insecticides have been brought under GST, raising their retail price. The farmer continues to suffer,” he said.
Bhupinder also attacked the state government for its “lack of vision, leading the state into chaos”. He said, “Congress had a vision for the state. Through our efforts, we were able to make Haryana the number one state in the country. This government has no understanding of governance and have led the state into disarray. The state is now number one in crime.”
Recounting work done by his government, Bhupinder said 3.82 lakh poor families were given 100 sq yd plots, while the interest rate on farm loans was reduced to 0%. “BJP preaches “Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas”, but the attack on the minority family in Bhondsi reveals the real and scary face of its poor governance,” he said.
Talking about the yatra, Hooda, the coordination committee chairman, said the six-day yatra the leadership has embarked upon, will seek support to end the people’s misery and to bring them relief. “Congress is the only party that can defeat BJP,” he reiterated.