Jan Aakrosh Rally: Rahul Gandhi vows to bring Congress back to power in 2019

In his speech at the Jan Aakrosh Rally, Rahul Gandhi expressed confidence that Congress would form government at Centre in 2019, and also win in Karnataka, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh before that

Photo courtesy: AICC
Photo courtesy: AICC


Congress President Rahul Gandhi has set the tone for Congress’ campaign for the next general elections in 2019, stating at a massive rally on Sunday that his party would defeat the Bharatiya Janata Party and return to power in 2019.

Rahul expressed confidence that Congress would also form government in the three poll-bound states of Karnataka, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh before 2019 national elections.

During a speech at Jan Aakrosh (public anger) Rally, the 47-year-old leader mounted a scathing attack on Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his “failure” to deliver on key election promises and his “silence” on many burning issues of the day,

Addressing a crowd of thousands at Ramlila Maidan, Rahul took on the current government on national security, farmers suicides, increase in the number of rapes and surge in attacks on minorities and Dalits in recent months, among other important issues.

Hitting out at Modi over Kathua, Unnao rape cases, Rahul said, “For the first time in 70 years, the Indian prime minister had to speak about an issue in which a BJP MLA attacked a woman and a child was attacked in Jammu and Kashmir.”

“PM Modi says Beti Bachao Beti Padhao, but members of his own party are assaulting women,” Rahul said.

Rahul noted during his speech that he had urged PM Modi in person to waive off farmers’ loans, but his request was shot down.

“I met PM Modi myself and asked him to waive off farm loans. He refused and said that waiving off farm loans is not their policy,” he said.

“Narendra Modiji does not increase the MSP but then talks about farmers. Arun Jaitleyji says that loan waiver for farmers is not an option,” pointed Rahul, adding that without the Congress party, farmers in this country wouldn’t be able to survive as their land would be grabbed by the Modi government and handed to the corporates.

The Congress chief took potshots at the informal summit between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Narendra Modi concluded in Wuhan on Saturday, saying that the Indian leadership had failed to confront China on the recent buildup on the Doklam Plateau.

“The Chinese are aggressively pursuing militarisation in Doklam. Despite this, all that PM Modi does is hold a "no-agenda" meeting with the Chinese President,” he said.

Rahul’s harshest words were reserved for the Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS), which he stated was undermining the democratic institutions of the country as PM Modi watched in silence.

“The BJP and RSS spread hatred and fear while Congress workers spread love. We have provided women security, maintained the unity of the country, strengthened the democracy in 70 years. PM Modi has spread lies about Congress party, its workers and its leaders and now the truth of Narendra Modi is out in the open,” said Rahul.

The recently elevated Congress President highlighted that unlike the BJP and its mentor organisation RSS, Congress respected difference and diversity in opinion.

Through linguistic intelligence, Rahul seemed to be able to convey his message clearly to the crowd, which also included senior Congress leaders including United Progressive Alliance (UPA) Chairperson Sonia Gandhi and former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

10 takeaways from the Jan Aakrosh rally:

  • An inspirational song from Hindi movie “Gulal” was played before Rahul’s entry on the stage. The song, Aarambh hai Prachand, loosely translates into the beginning of effort towards victory and glory. For observers, the rally marks the beginning of Congress’ bid to ultimately defeat the Modi government in the 2019 elections.
  • No picture other than Rahul Gandhi was displayed on the numerous banners, posters and hoardings at the rally ground, reflecting that he now wields complete command of the party.
  • Senior leaders like former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Ghulam Nabi Azad all expressed their faith in Rahul’s leadership and appealed people to support his ‘hand.’ Rahul seems to have the blessings of senior leaders and backing of the youth leaders in the party
  • Rahul highlighted failures of the Modi government in his speech, not failing to mention the contribution of Congress party to India since Independence. The unsaid message was loud and clear -Congress is part of the solution, not the problem.
  • Rahul spoke on a range of the issues, from inflation, women’s security to mob lynching and farmers’ distress. By doing so, he presented himself as a leader of the masses, not a particular religion or region. His speech at the Jan Aakrosh rally reaffirms his image as that of a pan-India leader.
  • Rahul announced during the rally that he wanted to go to Kailash Mansarowar after the Karnataka state elections. “When my plan suffered a mid-air scare, I had this thought,” he recounted. Rahul has never made a secret of Hindu background and by announcing his Kailash trip visit well in advance, Rahul used the opportunity to strengthen party’s Hindu voter base.
  • At one point during his speech, Rahul’s words evoked strong emotions among people when he stated how leaders of the Congress party had laid down their lives for the nation. Among the deceased leaders he mentioned were former chief minister of Punjab, Beant Singh, who was killed in a terrorist attack in Punjab in 1995. .
  • Rahul’s speech delivery and frankness struck the chord with many of the spectators. After the rally was over, people were heard talking that “Rahul has the capacity to defeat Modi.”
  • Rahul talked about four years of Modi government, but at the same time he appealed his party men to unite against BJP-RSS. His remark that a “Congress worker is a son of a lion” was met with a thunderous applause. Rahul has been able to mobilise the cadre of the party in a way unseen in the last four years. After completing his speech, Rahul asked for permission from the people whom he referred as his ‘family’ at Jan Aakrosh rally.
  • Jan Aakrosh rally marks the end of the factionalism in the Congress party -at least till 2019. Understanding the need of the hour, leaders from opposite camps such as – Jyotiraditya Scindia and Kamal Nath camp - were made to sit together at the Jan Aakrosh rally.

Rahul Gandhi’s speech at the rally

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Published: 29 Apr 2018, 6:04 PM