Vadra gives reason for not contesting from Varanasi: Responsible for 41 seats, not just 1
By  Shimon Chadha | Updated:  May 01, 2019, 03:01 PM
Congress in-charge of Uttar Pradesh East, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, finally gave a reason for not contesting the Lok Sabha elections from the constituency of Varanasi. Vadra said that she had consulted senior leaders of her party, and taken their advice, who suggested that she has a “responsibility of looking after 41 seats”. She further said that the candidates and party leaders would be “disappointed”, if she “focused on only one seat”.
Speculations had been ablaze since the charismatic lady, who bears a striking resemblance to her grandmother and former Prime Minister late Indira Gandhi, finally entered the political arena earlier this year. Media and Congress loyalists expected her to overturn the results of election, if she would contest and actively participate.
Priyanka had herself jokingly said at a rally a few weeks ago that she might contest elections from the constituency of Varanasi in UP, when urged by a worker to fight the polls.
Gandhi’s husband, Robert Vadra, while speaking to reporters, said that his wife “is ready to fight from Varanasi”, and that she is a hardworking person, and “people see her as an agent of change”. Though there had been no official confirmation from the party, Vadra’s statements had placed media and the internet in a frenzy.
Later, at a rally in Amethi, which has been represented by four members of her family, Priyanka told reporters, “If my party wants me to contest polls then I will definitely do so”.
The news was considered practically confirmed when Congress President Rahul Gandhi, in an interview, said that he is “not yet confirming”, whether his sister will contest from the Varanasi constituency. He added that he would like to “leave everyone in suspense”.
However, on April 25, the Congress announced its decision to field four-time MLA Ajay Rai from Varanasi, against Prime Minister Narendra Modi. In the 2014 elections, Rai suffered an embarrassing defeat, securing less than 1/5th of the votes that Modi won.
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