'We Are Fighting Against Power': Rahul Gandhi As Bharat Jodo Yatra Concludes In Mumbai

Leaders from the INDIA bloc from across the country came out in full strength to mark the end of the Bharat Jodo Yatra at Mumbai's iconic Shivaji Park.

Supporters carry large cutouts of India's opposition Indian National Congress party leader Rahul Gandhi and other opposition leaders during a rally at the conclusion of Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra in Mumbai, India, Sunday, March 17, 2024. Photo: AP

A sea of colorful flags from the Indian tricolor to Shiv Sena’s saffron, CPI(M)’s red, and Bahunjan Vanchit Party’s blue fluttered together in the breezy Mumbai evening at Shivaji Park in Dadar, as Congress leader Rahul Gandhi’s Bharat Jodo Yatra concluded on Monday, 

Leaders from the INDIA bloc from across the country came out in full strength to mark the end of the yatra in Mumbai. They sounded the bugle of the upcoming Loksabha elections by making a united call to save the country and its constitution by voting the Bharatiya Janata Party out.

Gandhi lashed out against Prime Minister Narendra Modi for controlling the country’s institutions like the Enforcement Directorate and the CBI and for having a “monopoly on corruption” through electoral bonds.  “We are not fighting against a political party (BJP) or an individual (Modi). We are fighting against the power,” he said adding that the BJP was able to snatch leaders from Sena and NCP with this power. 

“A big leader called my mother and cried saying they had created such fear that he had no option but to join the BJP,” he added in a veiled reference to former Maharashtra CM and Congress leader Ashok Chavan who left the party. This was the first time the Congress held a public rally on Sena’s home turf at Shivaji Park. 

Sena (UBT) President Uddhav gave a call of ‘Abki baar BJP Taddipar’ to expel the BJP in this election. Thackeray who lost the party’s name and emblem to the Shinde faction along with several senior leaders who fled from his party to join the BJP and Shinde Sena, said the “BJP is like a balloon.” “We did the job of blowing this balloon,” he said recalling the time when Shiv Sena was the close ally of the BJP in Maharashtra. 

Thackeray blamed the BJP for breaking political parties from Kashmir to Kanyakumari and for taking away their leaders in its stride. “They want to change the constitution. That is why the opposition (leaders) are either in jail or banished.”

RJD leader and former deputy chief minister of Bihar Tejaswi Yadav labelled Modi as a “manufacturer, wholesaler, and distributor of lies” and said his party had spread tremendous hatred in the country and it would take years to wipe it out. 

Sharad Pawar from NCP (SP), Tamil Nadu CM M K Stalin, Aam Aadmi Party leader Saurabh Bharadwaj, National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah, PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti, CPI general secretary Dipankar Bhattacharya, Jharkhand chief minister Champai Soren, and former CM Hemant Soren's wife Kalpana Soren were also present for the public gathering.

In the second phase of the Yatra, Gandhi walked 10,000 kms from Manipur to Dharavi slum settlement in Mumbai. Earlier, he had walked from Kanyakumari to Kashmir.