After Tharoor, Kharge lands in Hyderabad seeking support in Congress presidential election

Kharge promises a new-look Congress if he wins, attacks BJP and its policies as a grave threat to democracy.

ByRaj Rayasam

Published Oct 08, 2022 | 5:06 PM Updated Oct 08, 2022 | 5:06 PM

Mallikarjun Kharge addressing a public meeting. (Facebook)

Just days after Congress presidential candidate and Thiruvananthapuram MP Shashi Tharoor hit Hyderabad on the campaign trail, it was the turn of Mallikharjun Kharge on Saturday, 8 October.

And he focused all his attention of the BJP, stressing that the immediate task before the Congress was to bring down the dispensation led by the saffron party at the Centre in the next election in 2024.

He said that in the Congress, all decisions are taken together, and ridiculed the BJP for saying that the presidential election in the party was just a charade and a sham.

Replying to a question at a news conference after his meetings with Pradesh Congress Committee officials and delegates, he shot back at the BJP: “Let the BJP explain how LK Advani, Nitin Gadkari, Amit Shah, JP Nadda, and others were elected to the top position of their party.”

‘BJP a threat to democracy’

He said the BJP portended a threat to democracy and the most disturbing of its methods was to use the investigative agencies like the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the Enforcement Directorate (ED) to threaten Congress leaders into submission and make them join the saffron brigade.

“The Congress leaders are not joining the BJP of their own volition. They are being coerced,” he said.

He said a new look for the party was needed to energise the campaign against the BJP for making life unbearable to various strata of society.

In the last eight years, seven crore jobs were gone, inflation was on the rise, and the value of the rupee on a downhill march. Today the value of the US dollar is ₹82.82, which means that all the imported goods would become very expensive like petrol, diesel, atta, and so on, he pointed out.

He said the Congress presidential elections are very significant and sacrosanct and the present round will only be the fifth in the 138-year history of the party.

A new look Congress

After the election, the Congress, with a new makeover, would launch a campaign against the BJP with renewed vigour for systematically destroying all the institutions assiduously built over decades.

The PSUs, which gave employment to the youth, are now on the chopping block. The Congress has built a granary for the nation and built irrigation projects, he said, in reply to the BJP’s poser as to what the Congress had done during its long history of existence.

Earlier in the day, Kharge, on arrival at Begumpet airport, was accorded a warm reception by Telangana Congress president A Revanth Reddy and others.

After reaching Gandhi Bhavan, he interacted with PCC delegates and sought their support in the election.

In Telangana, there are about 238 delegates who have voting rights at the rate of two delegates from each of the 119 Assembly segments. The total number of voters is about 9,000.

Related: Find out how the Indian National Congress party elects its president here.