Media reports:

In a virtual launch of the campaign for Lok Sabha poll, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Friday embarked on his ‘Discover India’ journey from Orissa’s poverty-stricken Kalahandi area attacking the BJD-BJP government for its alleged poor implementation of the Centre’s flagship National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme. Rahul, who is on a four-day tour of Orissa, went deep inside Niyamigiri Hills and met members of the Dongria Khand tribe in the Ejrupa village of the district

The “neither here nor very apparent” heir apparent has decided to do his version of Bharat ek Khoj in the run up to the next general elections. The populist scoialist rhetoric that has been the hallmark of Congress politics since Independence is back.

This time however Rahul Gandhi is neither showing imagination nor conviction with these remarks that are a direct lift from the election rhetoric of John Edwards (the democratic also ran for President in the United states).

 there still exist two Indias – one growing rapidly while the other backward as ever

Shame on you Rahul, We  always knew you wanted talking points, your mother has not been very good at coming with some lines of her own either so isnt it high time you got some of your own ?

So what else did Rahul Gandhi “discover” on day one ?

Some new found love for tribals.

Projecting himself as a protector of tribal rights, Rahul said: “Your fight is mine too. I am a soldier for adivasis (tribals). I have heard your voices (of concern).”

Well let us see how much of a Soldier for Adivasis Rahul has been to date since his debut into Congress politics.

Offstumped did quick scan of news archives to find only 67 news stories with references to both Rahul Gandhi and Tribals to find some real gems on “how good a soldier” Rahul Gandhi has been for Tribals.

First this open letter to Sonia Gandhi from a freedom fighter complaining that Rahul Gandhi does not understand Tribal Sensitivities.

This lack of understanding about delicate sensibilities of people is often reflected in utterances and actions of present congress leadership. It is because of this factor that Sri Rahul Gandhi was not able to establish a rapport with the people in his tour of Uttar Pradesh.

Then this tug of war on the Tribal Rights Bill that saw Rahul Gandhi working behind the scenes  dilute the provisions of the Bill.

That was pretty much it in terms of any significant reference to Rahul Gandhi and Tribal Affairs apart from of course dancing with Tribals in Arunachal and taking a crash course on Tribal Affairs.

So on the basis of what is Rahul Gandhi claiming to be a “soldier for adivasis” when there is nothing in his public record to suggest the same ?

Offstumped has also reviewed his Parliamentary record to find about 295 references to Rahul Gandhi across Government of India websites, only 3 with any reference to adivasis and none of them carry any references to any direct contribution from Rahul Gandhi on Tribal issues. About 23 references to Rahul Gandhi and Tribals and none of them again carry any references to any direct contribution from Rahul Gandhi on Tribal issues.

Offstumped Bottomline: As Rahul Gandhi attempts his version of Bharat Ek Khoj 4 years after his Parliamentary debut it is clear that his record of the last 4 years has little to show by way of imagination, conviction or real accomplishment. As the poor Adivasis of Orissa dance to his tunes, they may as well realise that this Bharat ek Khoj could end up just being a case of “dhoondte rahe jaooge”.

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