With 2019 Lok Sabha Elections just around the corner, both the BJP and the Congress have intensified their poll campaigns across the country. While Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar will sound the poll bugle in Patna on March 3, Congress president Rahul Gandhi is scheduled to arrive in Chhattisgarh's Raipur on Monday. During his day-long visit, the Gandhi scion will address a convention of farmers titled 'Kisaan Abhaar Sammelan' at Rajyotsav Mela ground in Naya Raipur at around 2 pm, according to a party spokesperson.
Ahead of Gandhi's visit to Chhattisgarh, Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel and AICC in-charge of the state PL Punia on Sunday took stock of the arrangements. A function has been organised to express gratitude to people and farmers for voting the party to power in the state. Beneficiary farmers will be also distributed loan waiver certificates during the event.
As promised by Congress president Rahul Gandhi during his 2018 Assembly polls campaign, loans to the tune of over Rs 6,100 crore of 16.60 lakh farmers were written off hours after the party was voted to power. Implementing another pre-poll promise, the paddy is being procured at a rate of Rs 2,500 per quintal from farmers in the state. Besides, the Congress government has waived outstanding irrigation tax amounting to Rs 207 crore of 15 lakh farmers.
According to reports, a large number of farmers from across the state, including the Naxal-affected Bastar division, will participate in the event.
This will be the Congress chief’s first visit to Chhattisgarh after his party swept the Hindi heartland state in the recently concluded Assembly Elections 2018. On December 11, Congress ended the BJP's 15-year rule in Chhattisgarh by bagging 68 out of the 90 assembly seats.
General elections are due to be held in India between April and May to constitute the 17th Lok Sabha in India's bicameral Parliament.