Congress president Rahul Gandhi embarked on the last day of his two-day Bengaluru visit by offering his condolences to bereaved leader Margaret Alva, the former Rajasthan Governor who lost her husband Niranjan Alva on Saturday.
Gandhi visited the home of the former Governor, met the family members and offered his last respects to the mortal remains of Alva, who was a Supreme Court lawyer and son of the first parliamentarian couple Joachim and Violet Alva.
The Congress chief then headed for the home of Srinivas, a sweeper with the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), where he had breakfast with the family.
Accompanied by Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, Gandhi went to Jakkarayana Kere to interact with Paura Karmikas (sanitation workers). He took note of their expectations from the party and the state government. Gandhi and Siddaramaiah also paid homage to Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar.
The two leaders then addressed a special gathering comprising businessmen in the city.
The 47-year-old, who is projected as Congress’ prime ministerial candidate for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, will be concluding the sixth phase of his party’s Jana Aashirwad Yatre poll campaign in Karnataka with a series of meetings in the state capital.
He is scheduled to address supporters at a public meeting in the city’s Krishna Vihar Palace Ground at 5 pm on Sunday.
On Saturday, Gandhi attacked the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Amit Shah and Prime Minister Narendra Modi for insulting Dalits, tribals and Opposition leaders.
“Calling the entire opposition animals,” he said referring to the ‘Kutta-Kutti-Newla’ remark of the BJP president, “See, according to Amit Shah and the basic vision of the BJP-RSS there are only two non-animals in this country: Narendra Modi and Amit Shah.”
He said that the “disrespectful statement” reflected Shah’s “mentality”.
“Wherever BJP leaders go in India, they always insult Dalits and Adivasis… BJP ministers threaten to change our Constitution,” he said.
“I would like to warn the BJP that if they tamper with the Constitution written by Dr. Ambedkar, then they will have to deal with the Congress Party,” he added.