From September 2022, Mr Rahul Gandhi’s Bharat Jodo Yatra successfully crossed multiple states over several months, covering around 3,570 km from Kanyakumari to Kashmir, with the aim of establishing a’mohabbat ki dukaan’ (shop of love) in a ‘nafrat ka bazaar’ (market of hatred). This journey attracted people from all walks of life, and Rahul Gandhi’s goal was to unite India amidst the division caused by the ruling party, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which is referred to as the ‘hate ki Dukaan.’
When the ‘Bharat Jodo Yatra’ reached Rajasthan’s Alwar district on December 19th, Rahul Gandhi emphasised the significance of “opening a shop of love in the market of hatred” as a gesture to combat politics based on hate.Rahul Gandhi also said ” I am opening a shop of love. You hate me, you abuse me. But your shop is of hate, while my shop is of love.”
The concept of opening “shops of love” in the face of hatred can be traced back to the Indian Independence Movement, where leaders like Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, and Sardar Patel used slogans like “Satyagraha” and “Quit India” to mobilise the masses against British colonial rule. This concept should be spread across various parts of the country to counter the divisive politics promoted by the right-wing regime and unite the public against barriers of caste, religion, and hatred, promoting “mohabbat ki dukan.” Rahul Gandhi encouraged
Election slogans and initiating concepts in politics serve multiple purposes, including creating a brand identity, differentiating parties, gaining visibility, and fostering a sense of unity among supporters.
Guided by Gandhian principles of truth and non-violence, Rahul Gandhi and Congress Party leaders stood up for the rights of the people of India. Not only during the Bharat Jodo Yatra, but Rahul Gandhi continued to unite and speak out against injustice while promoting ‘mohabbat ki dukan.’ He believed that progress could only be achieved through peace and harmony.
In recent months, in Karnataka, Rahul succeeded in opening a “mohabbat ki dukaan” in a “nafrat ka bazaar” in Karnataka state, where his party won a majority of seats in assembly elections. The Karnataka verdict has proved that hate campaigns will not always work. Rahul Gandhi said the party has opened shops of love in Karnataka.
Rahul Gandhi asserted that the Congress had opened “shops of love” in Karnataka, and he encouraged people to adopt the idea of love over disharmony. Despite facing persecution and disqualification from the Lok Sabha, Rahul Gandhi continued his politics with dignity, upholding the principles of love, truth, and non-violence.
The second Bharat Jodo Yatra, scheduled to begin on October 2, signifies a another major step towards love and harmony in India, emphasising truth, unity values over hatred and disharmony. This upcoming yatra aims to further promote an atmosphere of love and affection.