Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Thursday, October 6, joined the Bharat Jodo Yatra in Karnataka‚Äôs Pandavapure, participating in a public event of the party after a long gap. Amid cheers and slogan-shouting by party workers, Sonia Gandhi walked beside her son Rahul Gandhi and other leaders for a few kilometres in Mandya district of Karnataka. A number of senior Congress leaders, including former chief minister Siddaramaiah and Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) president DK Shivakumar, walked along with the Gandhis.
Security personnel had a tough time controlling the crowds which jostled to get a glimpse of the Congress president. This is the first time that Sonia Gandhi has joined a public event after recovering from COVID-19 earlier this year. The Congress president had contracted coronavirus twice and was also hospitalised. Sonia Gandhi has not been electioneering or participating in public events of the party for a long time due to health reasons. She had last participated in a roadshow in Varanasi in August 2016 where she sustained a shoulder injury and later underwent surgery.
On Wednesday, Sonia Gandhi offered prayers at a temple in HD Kote Assembly segment of Mysuru, on the occasion of Vijayadashami. She had arrived in Mysuru on Monday afternoon for the Bharat Jodo Yatra, which took a two-day break for Ayudha Puja and Vijayadashami (Tuesday and Wednesday).
The 3,570 km long Bharat Jodo Yatra began from Kanyakumari on September 8. With the yatra, the Congress said it wants to combat the alleged divisive politics of the BJP-led Union government. Rahul Gandhi is spending 21 days in the Karnataka leg of the yatra, covering 511 km in the state during his march, which started from Kanyakumari on September 7 to Jammu on January 30, 2023.