YSR inspired Bharat Jodo Yatra, says Rahul Gandhi; YS Jagan, Sharmila pay tributes on YS Rajasekhara Reddy’s 75th birth anniversary

Rahul Gandhi said his over 4,000 km Kanyakumari to Kashmir 'Bharat Jodo Yatra' was inspired by party veteran YS Rajasekhara Reddy's 2003 foot march.

BySouth First Desk

Published Jul 08, 2024 | 4:21 PM Updated Jul 08, 2024 | 4:21 PM

YS Rajasekhara Reddy

Monday, 8 July, 2024, marks the 75th birth anniversary of the former chief minister of undivided Andhra Pradesh, YS Rajasekhara Reddy.

On the occasion, YSRCP chief YS Jagan Mohan Reddy paid tributes to his late father and former CM YS Rajasekhar Reddy at Idupulupaya in Kadapa district.

In a post on X, Reddy said, “Daddy, your 75th birthday is a festival for all of us… Considering your ambitions as our goals we are working for the welfare of crores of families.”

Across the state, several YSRCP leaders and activists paid their respects to the popular leader, who passed away in a chopper crash on 2 September, 2009.

Rajasekhara Reddy, a Congress veteran, had served as Chief Minister of undivided Andhra between 2004 and 2009.

Accompanied by his mother, YS Vijayalaxmi and other family members and party leaders, the opposition leader took part in a prayer meeting at his father’s grave.

Andhra Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) president YS Sharmila, Rajasekhar Reddy’s daughter, also paid homage to her father along with her party leaders.

‘YSR wanted to see Rahul Gandhi as PM’

Telangana Chief Minister A Revanth Reddy too paid homage to the former chief minister of undivided Andhra Pradesh and recalled that the departed leader wanted to see Rahul Gandhi as the Prime Minister of the country.

Let’s take a pledge to make Rahul Gandhi the PM, said Revanth Reddy.

Those who take a vow to make Rahul Gandhi as Prime Minister and work for it are the true successors of Rajasekhara Reddy. Those who work against this are against the late leader, he said.

He was speaking at an event held at Gandhi Bhavan in Hyderabad on the occasion of birth anniversary of Rajasekhara Reddy.

Earlier, Revanth Reddy, his deputy Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka and other party leaders paid tributes at the statue of Rajasekhara Reddy at Punjaguttta in Hyderabad.

The CM also visited a photo exhibition on the life of Rajasekhara Reddy, who was popularly known as YSR, at the government’s Mahatma Jyoti Rao Phule Praja Bhavan in Hyderabad.

AICC incharge of party affairs in Telangana Deepa Dasmunsi and other Congress leaders were present on the occasion.

Also Read: TDP seeking more than $12 billion financial aid from Union government

‘Bharat Jodo inspired by YSR’

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said his over 4,000 km Kanyakumari to Kashmir ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’ was inspired by party veteran YS Rajasekhara Reddy’s 2003 foot march across Andhra Pradesh.

In a video message, Gandhi said that he was a true leader of the masses and his grit, dedication and commitment to the upliftment and empowerment of the people of the state and India has been a guiding light to many.

“I personally learnt a lot from Rajasekhara Reddy ji. My ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’, the walk from Kanyakumari to Kashmir was inspired by Rajasekhara Reddy ji’s yatra across Andhra Pradesh. I remember the visuals of Rajasekhara Reddy ji walking through the heat, walking through the rain and walking with the people of Andhra Pradesh,” said the Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha.

“We took some of those ideas and merged them into our ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’,” added Gandhi, who led the over 4,000 km ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’ which passed through 12 states and two Union territories between September 2022 to January 2023.

In 2003, Reddy had undertaken a 1,400-km padyatra in Andhra Pradesh. He had led the Congress to a resounding victory a year later, defeating the incumbent Chandrababu Naidu-led Telugu Desam Party (TDP).

‘YS Sharmila will take forward YSR’s legacy’

Hailing Reddy, Gandhi said that he was a person who lived for the people of Andhra Pradesh.

“It is a tragedy that we lost him and I am absolutely certain that if he was here today, Andhra Pradesh would be a completely different place, it would not be facing the tragedies and the difficulties, it is facing. (YS) Sharmila ji is his daughter…I am confident she is going to take forward Rajasekhara Reddy ji’s legacy and she is going to do it because she has the same sentiment, the same tenacity, the same grit and the same affection and love for the people of Andhra Pradesh that he had,” the former Congress chief said.

Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge also hailed Reddy on his 75th birth anniversary.

“A compassionate and visionary leader, he dedicated his life to the welfare and development of Andhra Pradesh, leaving an enduring impact on the lives of its people through his innovative schemes and programmes,” Kharge said.

“In remembrance, we cherish his legacy and pay our homage to a leader who will always be adored for his unwavering commitment to the people,” he said.

Also Read: Ramachandraiah, Hari Prasad elected to AP Pradesh Legislative Council

(With PTI inputs)

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