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Jagdish Tytler's presence at Congress "Bharat Jodo" meeting sparks controversy

New Delhi: Former Union Minister Jagdish Tytler on Monday sparked controversy as he participated in an All India Congress Committee (AICC) meeting. Over the past few years, the party had distanced itself from Tytler as he faced legal trouble related to the 1984 anti-Sikh riots following the assassination of late Prime Minister Indira Gandhi by her Sikh bodyguards that left thousands dead in the sectarian violence.
"Is there any FIR (in 1984 anti-Sikh riots) against me? CBI has also given me clearance. Some are only doing politics...Yes, I will join the (Bharat Jodo Yatra), and I will be with the party until my last breath," Tytler told ANI outside the party office on Monday, after he discussed with other party colleagues the itinerary of the Rahul Gandhi-led over 3,500-km-long foot march from Kanyakumari to Kashmir aimed at boosting party moral and improving popular contact.
Tytler participated in the meeting along with Congress leaders KC Venugopal, Ajay Maken, and Shakti Singh Gohil in the BJY meeting among others.
Tytler had once held key party posts and was minister in central government under the Congress, with Minister of State for Overseas Indian Affairs, being the last post from which he resigned.
Tytler also took a dig at Aam Aadmi Party National Convenor and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal for his remark that AAP will form government in Gujarat in 2027.
"Let Kejriwal speak... We know Rahul Gandhi's program has got the entire nation working on it. We've seen what happened in Indira Gandhi's time and now we are again seeing this... People are joining him," Tytler said hailing the padayatra as mass contact movement which the party has already claimed to be the longest march on foot by any Indian politician in the history of independent India.
"We will participate because we are in favour of what he (Rahul Gandhi) is doing. So, we will participate in a big way," Tytler said. The yatra will enter Delhi on December 24, and after over a week-long break, will move on to Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Punjab and finally, Jammu and Kashmir, where it is expected to terminate in February 2023.
Congress MP KC Venugopal said: "It's high time that the Government of India pays attention to the issues of farmers, or they will invite another protest by farmers."
Congress MP and party General Secretary (Communications) Jairam Ramesh on Monday tweeted the complete schedule of the BJY's Delhi-leg.
"Bharat Jodo Yatra will reach Delhi in the evening of 24th December. After that, there will be a break of 9 days so the containers for the harsh winter in the north can be repaired and prepared before the yatra resumes. Also, many Bharat Yatris will return with their families after about 4 months to spend time with them. The journey will resume on January 3, 2023."
The Bharat Jodo Yatra is in Rajasthan and has crossed 100 days.
Makkal Needhi Maiam president and veteran actor Kamal Haasan is scheduled to take part in the yatra on December 24 in Delhi.
The foot march, which began from Kanyakumari on September 7, marked its 100 days on Friday, during the 12th day of its Rajasthan-leg.
Several Bollywood stars including Pooja Bhatt, Riteish Deshmukh, Swara Bhaskar and Riya Sen have already participated in the yatra.
Rahul Gandhi aims to mobilize the party cadre and unite the general public against the alleged "divisive politics in the country" through this yatra.
Apart from Rajasthan, the Bharat Jodo Yatra has covered parts of Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Madhya Pradesh, and Maharashtra. (ANI)

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