Congress chief Kharge rallies behind farmers - Hindustan Times
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Congress chief Kharge rallies behind farmers

By, Ludhiana
Feb 12, 2024 08:16 AM IST

Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge on Sunday extended his party’s support to farmers’ ‘Delhi Chalo’ call, accusing the Narendra Modi-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government of “destroying” ‘kisan’ and ‘jawan’ in the 10 years of its regime.

Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge on Sunday extended his party’s support to farmers’ ‘Delhi Chalo’ call, accusing the Narendra Modi-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government of “destroying” ‘kisan’ and ‘jawan’ in the 10 years of its regime.

Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge speaks during a public meeting, at Samrala in Ludhiana district, on Sunday. (PTI)
Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge speaks during a public meeting, at Samrala in Ludhiana district, on Sunday. (PTI)

Addressing the first Punjab Congress workers’ convention in Village Bondli of Samrala here, Kharge said the Congress will support the farmers’ protest in Delhi to press their demands. He said the farmers need to be congratulated for making the Modi government suspend the farm laws three years ago. “But they (the Centre) did not issue any notification of repealing the laws. Where is the notification of repealing these laws? Once it comes to power, the Congress will nullify these three laws” he said.

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Kharge’s statement came at a time when the Samyukta Kisan Morcha (non-political) and the Kisan Mazdoor Sangharsh Morcha have announced a ‘Delhi Chalo’ march on February 13 to press for enactment of a law to guarantee a minimum support price (MSP) for crops, pension for farmers and workers and other demands. The Congress president, in his speech, also said that former Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri’s slogan, “Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan” fits best in Punjab. “Punjab is special because the state has given the country both ‘jawan’ and ‘kisan’. The Modi government destroyed both ‘jawan’ and ‘kisan’ in the last 10 years,” he alleged, targeting the central government.

However, he refrained from making any direct comment on the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) or its government in the state. “In some states, the INDIA bloc has not worked. It is not about Punjab or any other state. It is a matter of the whole country. We will fight with our full potential,” he said.

Reflecting on the economic landscape under the BJP rule, the AICC chief said, “All growth witnessed in India has been seen during the Congress rule, but none has been seen during this dark BJP rule being witnessed in the nation currently. There are currently 30 lakh jobs available in government sectors, but still majority of our youth is unemployed. All we have seen under this BJP rule is that the rich are getting richer while the poor continue to struggle.”

Earlier, Punjab Congress president Amarinder Singh Raja Warring, while addressing the gathering, announced that the Congress would go solo in Punjab and contest all 13 seats.

On Saturday, AAP national convener and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and Punjab chief minister Bhagwant Mann had also made a similar announcement about their election plans in Punjab. Both Congress and AAP are part of the INDIA bloc.

Meanwhile, Congress leader Navjot Singh was conspicuous by his absence.

In a statement by the party later, Kharge said that the gathering signified a monumental moment for the party. “The resolute presence of our workers and office-bearers underscores the unwavering determination of the Punjab Congress to secure victory across all 13 constituencies in the forthcoming elections,” he said.

Congress Punjab affairs in-charge Devender Yadav, leader of opposition Partap Singh Bajwa, former chief ministers Charanjit Singh Channi, and Rajinder Kaur Bhattal were among the state leaders present at the convention.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR
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    Tarsem Singh Deogan is a senior reporter at Ludhiana. He has 16 years of experience in journalism. He has covered all beats and now focuses on crime reporting.

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