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Land bill: Cong plans rally to celebrate ‘victory of farmers’

Sonia Gandhi

New Delhi: Congress is planning a massive rally in the national capital later this month to celebrate the “victory of farmers” in forcing the Narendra Modi government to “backtrack” on the controversial land bill.

Congress sources said the rally, which will be addressed by the top leadership including party president Sonia Gandhi and vice-president Rahul Gandhi, is expected to be held anytime between September 21 and September 24.

A senior party leader said the meeting of the Congress Working Committee (CWC) scheduled to be held here on September 8 is likely to decide on the details of the rally even as he claimed that the government’s decision was the outcome of the struggle of farmers.

The apex policy making body of the party will also deliberate on its strategy to take on the Modi government over a host of issues, including the alleged wrongdoing by two BJP chief ministers and several other leaders.

“Determination shown by Soniaji (and) Rahul ji and Congress finally forced (Prime Minister) Modi to backtrack. Farmers saved from Land Sharks (sic),” Congress General Secretary Digvijaya Singh said in a tweet today reflecting the buoyant mood in the party.

The CWC meeting comes days after the land ordinance was allowed to lapse as the government, facing stiff resistance, decided not to re-promulgate it for a fourth time.

The issue had seen the Congress and other opposition parties upping the ante against the BJP-led NDA. The opposition had dubbed the moves as “anti-farmer” and “pro-corporate” after the government went ahead with plans to bring a series of drastic amendments to the land bill of 2013, passed during the UPA regime.

Rahul Gandhi had led the Congress protest against the land ordinance while party chief Sonia Gandhi had led a march of opposition leaders to Rashtrapati Bhawan on the issue.

Congress had also organised a kisan rally at the historic Ram Lila Maidan here on the eve of the second phase of the Budget Session of Parliament earlier this year.

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