Ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha elections and a continuation of the Congress’ ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’, party leader and Lok Sabha MP Rahul Gandhi is going to start a countrywide ‘Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra’ on January 14. Rahul will start the ‘Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra’ from Uttar Pradesh’s Chandauli and subsequently visit Congress strongholds Amethi and Rae Bareli, followed by Varanasi, the parliamentary constituency of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. It is clear from the route plan of this nationwide yatra that Rahul Gandhi is again focusing on the politics of Uttar Pradesh and is likely to return to Amethi to interact with the people there. Focusing on the politics of Uttar Pradesh, Rahul will spend most of his time in the most populous state covering 1,074 km in 11 days. The former Congress president will embark on a tour of 23 Lok Sabha seats across 20 districts in the state.
During this yatra, all the INDIA bloc parties along with the ruling BJP will keep a close watch on what will be Rahul Gandhi’s political agenda among the people regarding the politics of North and South India and to what extent he is able to take along the allies of the INDIA bloc during the yatra. Apart from this, amid the consecration ceremony of the Ram temple in Ayodhya on January 22, the Congress leader will also have to clarify his stand on Sanatan Dharma. After losing the Assembly elections in the three Hindi heartland states of Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh in December 2023, the Congress will be under extreme pressure from the regional parties to pose a formidable political challenge to the BJP. In every state the ‘Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra’ will pass through, however the seat-sharing between the Congress and its INDIA bloc allies will pose a huge challenge.
Due to the construction of the Ram temple in Ayodhya, an atmosphere of mobilisation of Hindu votes in favour of the BJP seems to have been created in North India. In such a situation, Rahul Gandhi will have a bigger challenge to stop the resurgence of Hindutva being created with the help of the Ram temple. Moreover, since the ‘Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra’ is completely political, all the INDIA bloc parties will keep a hawk’s eye on the statements given by various Congress leaders as well as what will be the future role of the Congress regarding the alliance with the SP in Uttar Pradesh. Of the total 80 Lok Sabha seats in Uttar Pradesh, the state Congress wants to contest on the maximum number of seats. Ahead of seat adjustment for the Lok Sabha polls, the yatra will be a challenge for the Opposition INDIA bloc since the rift between the SP and the Congress may not be visible on the ground, but internal discontent between both the parties cannot be negated.