Pawan Khera and Manish Khanduri
It rained cats and dogs, as the saying goes, and for a while there was even a lightening advisory. Yatris sheltering inside their large canopy tent at their midday place of rest at Hathi Belgal could be pardoned for briefly thinking that it could all come down on their heads.
But the rain eased up and it was under very pleasant skies and cool weather that the Yatris marched to their evening destination at Manukurthi 11 kilometres away.
And what a march it was! Andhra Pradesh seemed to extend a more than warm welcome; for example there was an almost kilometre long line of people in just one habitation, Aluru, with people crowding the streets, on their balconies and outside their houses.
And it was like a walk through a slice of India. An almost arrow straight road against yen backdrop of stunning white clouds an azure skies. And along the way a rich diversity of people. We met on one group Mohammed Dawood M, Yogendra, Vishwanath, Gajendra, Ajay and Lakshmikant who had come from “far away to see the Bharat Jodo Yatra.”
We also met standing outside his beautiful Church, Father Gian Prakash who was waiting for the Yatris. Just a few hundred metres from him was Rahul, 12, and Siddique, 14 who were separately waiting to see Congress leader Rahul Gandhi.
As an example of the passion that the Yatra is evoking among Congress cadres we would particularly like to mention Trinadha Rao, who at the age of 82 was marching with the energy of someone half a century younger. “This is what the nation needs,” he said “And I feel proud to participate.”
We’re proud that you’re walking with us, Mr Rao.
In the afternoon Congress MP Rahul Gandhi had an interaction with local farmers, discussing agriculture related
issues including adequate compensation for land allotted for development of Amravati, and for those who have been victims of displacement.
The Bharat Jodo Yatra is a five month, 3500 kilometre long padyatra from Kanyakumari in the South of India to Kashmir up in the North. It is part of the party’s national mass outreach program aimed at highlighting social polarisation, economic inequalities and political centralisation.
Ground research: Aparna Ashwarya (INC Communications Department research team)
End of Day Travel Facts
1. Current District Name – Kurnool
2. The struggle for liberation against the Britishers in Kurnool goes back to the 1800s. Leaders like Uyyalawada Narasimha Reddy, Muthukukr Gowdappa and Nawab Rasool Khan, the last Nawab of Kurnool fought against the British East India Company
3. The district is known for the Kurnool Circular issued by the Kurnool District Congress Committee during the Quit India Movement,1942. Since leadership was preemptively arrested by the British. the Kurnool circular served as a guiding pathway for the people during the movement.
4. Kurnool city, the district headquarters, is referred to as the Gateway of Rayalaseema.
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