Rahul Gandhi on claims that Congress’ next president would be ‘remotely controlled’: ‘Both Kharge and Tharoor are…’

New Delhi: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Saturday (October 9, 2022) rejected claims that the next party chairman would be “remotely controlled” by his family, saying that both contenders – Mallikarjun Kharge and Shashi Tharoor – are people of stature and understanding. Responding to questions at a press conference in Karnataka’s Turuvekere on the 31st day of his “Bharat Jodo Yatra”, the former head of Congress said it was “offensive” to make such a suggestion.

“Both the people who are standing (in the polls) have a position, have a perspective and are people of stature and people of understanding. I don’t think any of them are a remote (chief) and frankly this tone is offensive to them both,” he said.

When asked why he did not contest upcoming polls, Gandhi said his reasons are stated in the letter of resignation he gave when he resigned the post of party leader in 2019.

Elections to the post of Congress President are scheduled for October 17, and the results will be announced October 19.

Bharat Jodo Yatra was a great learning experience

At the press conference, Rahul Gandhi also said that the “Bharat Jodo Yatra” was a great learning experience for him. He added that thousands of people have joined the march because they are tired of the kind of politics being conducted under the BJP and the prevailing unemployment, price hikes and economic inequality.

“I believe in Tapasya, always has been. That’s my nature and that’s been the nature of my family. I wanted an element of suffering for myself. I didn’t want communication with people to be easy. So I thought what would be something that would make me suffer, so that as I talk to my people, I can share in their suffering,” he said.

“They speak more clearly because they say he walks on the road… It was a learning experience for me. To be honest, it hasn’t even started yet,” Gandhi said.

Gandhi said the aim of the yatra was to bring India together and was not aimed at the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.

“India is being divided, violence is spreading in our society and this is damaging to our country,” he said.

Gandhi said the yatra is intended to address three issues: “Violence and hatred that the BJP-RSS (Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh) spreads, the massive concentration of wealth allowed, which is destroying the Indian economy and leading to unemployment ; and a massive and continuous increase in inflation”.

“There is a political element in it (yatra), but for me the main purpose of this yatra is, I see in the political system a distance that has arisen between the political class and our citizens. The idea for me was to be right on the road and physically close to our people,” he added.

(With input from the agency)

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