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Gandhis’ Electoral Maneuver: Rahul Gandhi to Raebareli, Kishori Lal Sharma for Amethi

Amethi, May 3, 2024: In a last-minute decision that caught many by surprise, the Congress party announced Rahul Gandhi as its candidate from the Raebareli constituency, a seat recently vacated by his mother Sonia Gandhi. This move marks a significant exit from expectations, as Rahul was widely anticipated to make a bid to reclaim the family bastion of Amethi, which was lost to the BJP in 2019.

The Congress’s decision to field Kishori Lal Sharma, a loyalist of the Gandhi family, from Amethi underscores the party’s determination to regain lost ground in the constituency. However, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, who had nurtured Raebareli on her mother’s behalf for over a decade, declined to contest from the seat.

Both Rahul Gandhi and Kishori Lal Sharma are set to file their nominations today, marking the culmination of weeks of speculation and suspense within the party. However, there are concerns within the Congress ranks that Rahul’s decision to contest from Raebareli could inadvertently play into the hands of the BJP, especially with Union Minister Smriti Irani, the incumbent MP from Amethi, poised for a vigorous defense of her seat.

In an exclusive interview with NDTV, Smriti Irani suggested that the Congress’s delay in announcing its candidate for Amethi indicated apprehension about facing her in the electoral arena. The BJP leader’s confident stance underscores the fierce battle expected in Amethi, where both parties are gearing up for a showdown.

Priyanka Gandhi Vadra’s decision not to contest from Raebareli has also raised eyebrows within the Congress, with some leaders expressing concern about the potential negative perception it could create. Nonetheless, Vadra extended her congratulations to Kishori Lal Sharma, emphasizing his loyalty and dedication to public service.

As Rahul Gandhi prepares to contest from both Raebareli and Wayanad, where he won in the 2019 elections, the Congress faces the prospect of managing the two constituencies effectively. A victory in both seats could pose a logistical challenge for the party, as Gandhi would be required to vacate one of them. However, for now, the focus remains on the impending electoral battle in Raebareli and Amethi, where the Congress seeks to make a resounding statement of its resurgence.

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