Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday took his fight against the contentious land acquisition bill to Punjab as he travelled by train today to visit the NDA-ruled state and see the condition of farmers “with my own eyes”.
Dressed in a brown tee and jeans and sporting a stubble, the Congress Vice President reached this town in Haryana bordering Punjab this evening sitting in a general compartment of the Sachkhand express for the visit dubbed as “political” by his critics. “I have been told that the situation is very bad. So I want to see it with my own eyes.
I am going to Punjab. I had also stated in my speech (in Parliament) that those who provide grains to the country, food to the country, from them their land is being snatched. This is wrong and we will counter it,” Gandhi told reporters from his window seat earlier at the New Delhi Railway station from where he boarded the train.
Congress leaders Jyotiraditya Scindia and Shakeel Ahmed, AICC in-charge of Punjab accompanied Gandhi. Asked to respond to the criticism that his visit had political overtones, Gandhi shot back,” What do they want to mak everything non-political.”
Gandhi is on his way to visit Khanna and Gobindgarh by road in the SAD-BJP ruled state and will take stock of the situation in the state’s grain markets where farmers are finding it difficult to sell their produce after the recent unseasonal rains. He will also have a stop at Sarhind Mandi The visit comes at a time when farmers in the region have accused the government of tardy wheat procurement. The state has also been witnessed suicides by farmers.
Khanna grain market is considered one of the largest grain markets in Asia. The visit to Punjab is a precursor to the Kisan Padyatra that Gandhi will undertake next month to reach out to farmers against the backdrop of the agrarian crisis.