Rahul Gandhi’s Bharat Nyay Yatra, spanning 6,200km from Manipur to Mumbai, signifies Congress’s renewed outreach strategy. This extensive journey aims to address socio-economic concerns and strengthen the party’s grassroots presence ahead of the critical 2024 elections.
New Delhi, December 28, 2023 – In a bid to connect with the masses and bolster the party’s presence on the ground, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi is embarking on a 6,200km-long Bharat Nyay Yatra from Manipur to Mumbai, covering 14 states and 85 districts.
The yatra, set to kick off on January 14 and conclude on March 20, is reminiscent of the earlier Kanyakumari-to-Kashmir Bharat Jodo foot march that garnered mixed electoral results.
Congress general secretary KC Venugopal announced the route, spanning Manipur, Nagaland, Assam, Meghalaya, West Bengal, Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha, Chhattisgarh, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Gujarat, and Maharashtra. Notably, nine states were excluded from the previous Bharat Jodo Yatra.
The decision to undertake this extensive yatra follows a meeting of the Congress Working Committee on December 21, where party members strongly urged Rahul Gandhi to lead another cross-country march. Gandhi, acknowledging the party’s call, will use a combination of bus travel and walking for this journey.
This initiative comes on the heels of the Congress facing setbacks in key states, losing governments in Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh and failing to displace the BJP in Madhya Pradesh. With general elections looming, the party aims to address its poor performance in north India, which accounts for a significant number of Lok Sabha seats.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) dismissed the move, with Union Minister Anurag Thakur highlighting Prime Minister Modi’s contributions and accusing Congress of divisive politics.
The previous Bharat Jodo Yatra was credited for rejuvenating Rahul Gandhi’s image and energizing party cadres. Despite mixed electoral results, the yatra played a pivotal role in reconnecting with ordinary people, social groups, activists, farmers, and women.
The Bharat Nyay Yatra, scheduled ahead of the 2024 elections, focuses on economic, social, and political justice. With eight of the 14 states to be covered being BJP-ruled, the yatra is strategically positioned to target the crucial north Indian region.
Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh emphasized that the yatra would culminate on March 20 and would aim to inspire youth, women, and marginalized communities. Additionally, a mega rally named ‘Hain Tayyar Hum’ (we are ready) is set to be held in Nagpur on December 28, marking the party’s foundation day and signaling the beginning of preparations for the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.
Ramesh also took to Twitter, stating, “The Bharat Nyay Yatra is anchored in the Preamble’s very first pillar of justice — social, economic and political. The repeated assaults on the Constitution will not be allowed to succeed!”
Originally planned from Arunachal Pradesh to Gujarat, the route was altered due to ethnic violence in Manipur, highlighting the Congress’s sensitivity to pressing issues and its commitment to addressing them.