Taking a swipe at the BJP, Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi on Wednesday said it should first pursue the path of truth shown by Mahatma Gandhi and then talk about him. She made the remarks before participating in a silent march organised in Lucknow by the Congress on the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi. "It was the order of Gandhiji to pursue the path of truth. First, the BJP should pursue the path of truth and then talk about Gandhiji," the Congress leader said.
The silent march is also being viewed as a show of strength by the Congress which has been on the sidelines of state politics for a long time. About 80 Congress workers were arrested on Monday at a public meeting ahead of a march they had planned in support of the law student who has accused former Union minister Swami Chinmayanand of rape.
In an informal chat with media persons just before embarking on the march, she said, "Atrocities are being committed on women and when they raise their voice to fight against them, they are being crushed. We will definitely struggle against it."
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The three-kilometre-long march, which started from Shaheed Smarak, culminated at GPO Park, where floral tributes were paid to Mahatma Gandhi. Priyanka passed through the main thoroughfares of the state capital, marching alongside party leaders and workers.
In the presence of Priyanka, who was surrounded by security personnel, party workers desisted from raising slogans. There was also a clamour for selfies with Priyanka, which she smilingly obliged.
Former Union minister Jitin Prasad, who was put under house arrest in Shahjahanpur on Monday to stop him from taking out a 'nyay yatra' in support of the law student, and others took part in the march donning white "Gandhi caps".
Priyanka Gandhi was scheduled to interact with workers and leaders at the party headquarters after the culmination of the march but it was called off at the last minute and she left for the airport directly from GPO Park. Senior party leader Akhilesh Pratap Singh said Priyanka had high fever and rushed back after completing the march.