The Congress’s Bharat Jodo Yatra has the lofty aim of forging a narrative of unity against the BJP’s divisive politics but it’s also about rebuilding political capital for Rahul Gandhi
Sonia Gandhi joins Rahul in Mandya on the Karnataka leg of the rally, Oct.
6; (Photo: Chandradeep Kumar)
It’s a giant, moving jambore and in the middle of it, the cynosure of all eyes, is Congress leader Rahul Gandhi. Born to one of India’s most powerful political families but at a complicated distance from power himself, the Gandhi scion has been following an unusual routine since Sept ember 7. He has been walking some 20-25 km a day, with the media recording his progress diligently: 255 km by the 12th day, 511 by the 21st, 700+ by the end of his first month on the road. He spends his nights in a container—17 feet long, 6 feet wide and 8 feet high— mounted on a Tata truck. Equipped with an AC, freezer, bed, sofa, table and an attached bathroom, the container is part of a mobile caravanserai of sorts. There are 64 other such containers, all of whom keep moving location with the padayatris as Rahul’s Bharat Jodo Yatra (BJY) wends its way across India.