Rahul Gandhi treks seven hills
Congress president Rahul Gandhi trekked the holy seven hills to reach Tirumala, the abode of Lord Venkateswara on foot on Friday Rahul who reached Alipiri, the foot of the holy Tirumala hills by road at about 1130 am after landing in the airport by special flight from New Delhi, set out on foot through the pedestrian path to Tirumala
Tirupati: Congress president Rahul Gandhi trekked the holy seven hills to reach Tirumala, the abode of Lord Venkateswara on foot on Friday. Rahul who reached Alipiri, the foot of the holy Tirumala hills by road at about 11.30 am after landing in the airport by special flight from New Delhi, set out on foot through the pedestrian path to Tirumala.
The Congress president was accompanied by Raihan, his nephew, (Priyanka Gandhi’s son) and young Congress activists while the senior leaders including party state in-charge Oomen Chandi, PCC president N Raghuveera Reddy, Dr Chinta Mohan, former Chief Minister N Kirankumar Reddy, JD Seelam, Panabaka Lakshmi and others reached Tirumala by road after seeing off Rahul at Alipiri, the foot of Tirumala hills from where the pedestrian path to Tirumala originates.
Rahul surprised everyone by climbing the steep stone steps with ease and briskly moving up fast even as the party young activists accompanying him struggled hard to keep pace with him.
The security personnel had a tough time with the pilgrims trekking the hills vying with each other to come closer to wish Congress president while many others devotees on the pedestrian path climbing the steps were in surprise to see Rahul Gandhi amidst them on the footpath like other common pilgrims moving fast without any fanfare.
The Congress president reached Tirumala after climbing about 3,750 footsteps in about 2 hours 15 minutes to reach Tirumala and proceeded straight to the guest house for a brief halt for lunch before visiting the shrine.
He is probably the first national leader who preferred to go to Tirumala through the pedestrian path on foot climbing the steep stone steps, which is strenuous and also ignoring security aspects, following the age-old practice of the ardent devotees of Hindu God Lord Venkatewswara, Tirumala.
Interestingly, Rahul Gandhi and his nephew did not show any sign of fatigue or strain during the two-hour long trekking the hills and in fact both the uncle and nephew vied with each other in climbing the stone steps fast completing the climbing of the 10-km long pedestrian path in just over two hours, which only a young and physically very fit can accomplish.
Rahul stopped just a few seconds to wish the pilgrims en route and to pose for selfie with them. Elaborate security arrangements were made all along the 10-km long serpentine pedestrian path from Alipiri to Tirumala airport and also in the pilgrim city where the Congress president addressed a public meeting to mark the party Bharosa Yatra, reassuring party's commitment to accord Special Category Status to AP, immediately after it comes to power in the 2019 general election.
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