Rahul Gandhi launches election campaign in Northeast India

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Congress President Rahul Gandhi.(Photo: IANS)

Launching his party’s election campaign in the Northeast from Itanagar in Arunachal Pradesh, Congress President Rahul Gandhi arrived here on Tuesday evening for a two-day visit to Manipur.

Party sources said during his stay, the Congress Chief will finalise his party’s candidates for the two constituencies in Manipur. The BJP hasn’t announced its candidates for the state as yet.

Soon after his arrival, Gandhi paid tributes at Shaheed Minar and visited vendors at Ima Keithel or the women’s only market. He also addressed workers at the local Congress party office.

Gandhi is slated to interact with students at the Palace compound auditorium on Wednesday morning. Later, he will address a public meeting at Hafta Kangjeibung.

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India’s Congress party president Rahul Gandhi waves to supporters as he arrives to address a public meeting in Hyderabad, India, Tuesday, Aug. 14, 2018. (AP Photo/Mahesh Kumar A.)

The Congress, which ruled Manipur for three consecutive terms, secured 28 seats in the 60-member House in the last Assembly elections, while the BJP got just 21. However, the BJP managed to form a government in the state with the support of MLAs from other parties and some independents.

Former Chief Minister and Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader Okram Ibobi told IANS that Gandhi’s visit to Manipur was meant to motivate people to fight for the restoration of their democratic rights, which were “snatched” away after the Assembly elections.