Bharat Express

Kharge Predicts Modi’s Assurances Will Mirror Fate of ‘India Shining’ Campaign in 2004

During the buildup to the 2004 general elections, the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government prominently used the slogan ‘India Shining’. However, this campaign failed to address the underlying discontent among the public, ultimately leading to Vajpayee’s defeat in the polls.

During a meeting of the Congress Working Committee (CWC) on Tuesday, Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge asserted that the country is yearning for change and likened the guarantees of the Narendra Modi government to the ill-fated ‘India Shining’ campaign of 2004.

The ‘India Shining’ campaign was a central slogan of the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government leading up to the 2004 general elections. However, it failed to resonate with the ground realities, contributing to Vajpayee’s defeat in the polls. Kharge’s remarks hold significance as ‘Modi’s guarantees’ are a cornerstone of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) electoral strategy.

The CWC convened earlier today to endorse the party’s draft Lok Sabha election manifesto and is also anticipated to pass a resolution acknowledging the outcomes of the ‘Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra’ spearheaded by Rahul Gandhi.

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While the approval of the manifesto is expected, Kharge stressed the necessity for every Congress worker, whether in villages or cities, to mobilize. He emphasized the importance of disseminating the manifesto to every household to counter the BJP effectively.

Kharge urged senior leaders to act as motivators, underscoring the need to address pertinent national issues highlighted during the ‘Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra’.

Furthermore, Kharge emphasized maintaining focus on crucial public issues, policies, programs, and priorities for the forthcoming five years.

Key figures attending the CWC meeting included former Congress presidents Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, as well as senior leaders such as P Chidambaram, Mukul Wasnik, Randeep Surjewala, Jairam Ramesh, Meira Kumar, Tariq Anwar, and BK Hariprasad. The CWC was expanded last year to include a greater representation of women, SC, ST, and youth.

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This marks the final CWC gathering before the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.

Kharge elaborated on the extensive efforts put into the manifesto, emphasizing the importance of public participation. He mentioned the ‘Awaaz Bharat Ki’ website through which suggestions were solicited, making the manifesto representative of the people’s voices.

Kharge assured that the promises made in the manifesto would be upheld, highlighting the Congress’s history of fulfilling commitments. He recalled the legacy of the party’s manifestos dating back to 1926, notably the inaugural manifesto issued under the leadership of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru in 1951, titled ‘What Congress Stands For’.

Praising Rahul Gandhi, Kharge acknowledged the significance of the 63-day long ‘Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra’ in drawing attention to the real issues faced by the people, both domestically and internationally. He emphasized the historical importance of such endeavors in fostering public engagement, noting the unprecedented scale of the recent yatra led by Rahul Gandhi.