107 rallies in 75 days: Rahul Gandhi’s marathon campaigning

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi steered the party’s poll campaign for over a two-and-a-half-month period and did high-pitched canvassing across the length and breadth of the country….reports Asian Lite News

The Congress’ electioneering for the 2024 polls, initially started off on a slow note on March 16 but soon picked up pace with the party’s top leadership taking to the hustings and wooing the electorate with a slew of poll promises.

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi steered the party’s poll campaign for over a two-and-a-half-month period and did high-pitched canvassing across the length and breadth of the country.

In the 75-day period, from March 16 to May 30 (as campaigning ends), Rahul Gandhi engaged with the public via election rallies, roadshows, public interactions and other campaign events including Nyay Sammelans and Nyay Manch.

As per the party’s campaign organisers, the Wayanad MP addressed a total of 107 poll rallies along with public interaction programs during the 75-day period.

In the later phases of the campaign, he was seen addressing at least two election rallies on a daily basis.

Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge also did not stay behind in terms of public outreach programmes.

The octogenarian leader held more than 100 public meetings, addressed more than 20 press conferences and gave over 50 interviews during the entire stretch of canvassing.

The major poll plank of Congress has been financial assistance of Rs 1 lakh yearly to women of poor families and youth under apprenticeship programmes.

In the middle of electioneering, Rahul Gandhi and Congress leaders came under direct attack from Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the BJP because of caste census pledge and the promise of wealth re-distribution as under ‘aadhi abaadi, aadha haq’ pledge.

Towards the final phases, an ’embattled’ Congress sought to tactically drop its focus on the re-distribution of resources pledge and sought to hard sell its ‘freebies’ proposal under which it has promised Rs 1 lakh assistance to women and youth of the country.

Kharge in a recent press conference also promised to double the free ration scheme, as existing under Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government.

Rahul Gandhi’s promise of ‘khata khat’ transfer of money into people’s accounts every month drew traction among citizens also, as visible in recent election rallies.

Besides Rahul Gandhi and Kharge, Priyanka Gandhi led the party’s campaign from the front and mounted an aggressive campaign to win the family bastion of Raebareli, the second constituency from where her brother Rahul is contesting the Lok Sabha polls.

Priyanka Gandhi’s marathon election campaign in this poll season clocked 108 public meetings and roadshows, more than 100 media bytes, one television interview, and five print interviews spread over the last 55 days, the party said.

Priyanka Gandhi, who campaigned in 16 states and one union territory, hit back at Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s attack on the Congress party and his allegations in a measured manner. Her speeches garnered adequate attention in this election as she shattered the Prime Minister and the Bharatiya Janata Party’s efforts to misdirect the narrative, the Congress said.

Gandhi’s dialogue, conversation style, gentleness, simplicity, and humility received much praise from the public.

Gandhi concluded her Lok Sabha election campaign with a huge road show in Himachal Pradesh’s Solan. After offering prayers to Hanuman at Jakhu temple, Gandhi held her last road show of this poll campaign at Solan, in which thousands participated.

In her 55-day strong election campaign, Priyanka Gandhi also addressed two conferences of thousands of workers in Amethi and Rae Bareli.

Sharpening the Congress’ election campaign, Gandhi held two to three public meetings and road shows every day. The most vigorous campaign was conducted in Rae Bareli and Amethi, where she participated in an average of 8-10 meetings, welcome ceremonies, or road shows every day.

Gandhi also camped in Uttar Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh during this election season and brought life to the election campaign in Karnataka and Kerala. She also camped in prominent constituencies in Assam and Tripura.

In the course of her campaign, Gandhi covered the seats of Garhwal and Kumaon in Uttarakhand, Marathwada and the north of Maharashtra, Mysore in Karnataka, Kalyana-Karnataka, the Kittur region in Karnataka, and the Malwa region of Punjab, the Congress said.

Priyanka Gandhi covered seats of tribal majority areas in Jharkhand, Marwar in Rajasthan, Eastern Rajasthan, Jaipur, Matsya region (Alwar) of Rajasthan, Durg division, Bastar division, Raigarh division of Chhattisgarh, and Chambal seats of Madhya Pradesh.

The crowd that came to Priyanka Gandhi’s public meetings or road show in Saharanpur, Dhubri, Fatehpur Sikri, Sirsa, Nandurbar, Kullu, Wayanad, Zahirabad, and Varanasi broke all records, the party said.

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