States & UTs

    Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi Offer Prayers After He Files Nomination For Raebareli Lok Sabha Seat

    Inam Ansari
    May3/ 2024
    Last Updated:

    Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi Offer Prayers After He Files Nomination

    Raebareli: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi and other party leaders on Friday offered prayers here after he filed his nomination papers from Uttar Pradesh's Raebareli seat.
    Congress Parliamentary Party Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, party leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and her husband Robert Vadra were among those who offered prayers during the puja held at the house of late party leader Gaya Prasad Shukla. The house has been associated with the party for decades.
    Locals said the puja was held after filing the nomination due to paucity of time earlier.
    "It started with former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in 1967. It has become a norm that whenever a member of the Gandhi family files nomination, they first offer prayers here," KC Shukla, grandson of Gyan Prasad Shukla, told ANI.
    After days of speculation, Rahul Gandhi today filed his nomination from Raebareli, a stronghold of the Gandhi family, which was represented by his mother Sonia Gandhi in the outgoing Lok Sabha. There was anticipation earlier that Priyanka Gandhi Vadra will contest from either Amethi or Raebareli, two seats in Uttar Pradesh which are prestige battles for the party.
    Rahul Gandhi, who is MP from Wayanad in Kerala and is re-contesting from the seat, lost from Amethi in 2019 Lok Sabha polls to Union Minister Smriti Irani. Rahul Gandhi had won the seat, also a Gandhi family stronghold, three times in a row till 2019.
    Congress has fielded KL Sharma, a loyalist of the Gandhi family, from Amethi against Smriti Irani.
    Rahul is pitted against BJP candidate and three-time MLC Dinesh Pratap Singh in Raebareli.
    Earlier today, claiming that Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra was deliberately denied a ticket to contest the Lok Sabha elections, expelled leader Acharya Pramod Krishnam on said she was a "victim of family and party conspiracy".
    "I said this earlier that Rahul Gandhi will not contest Amethi. I said this, too, that Rahul Gandhi will not let Priyanka Gandhi Vadra fight these elections. There is a big conspiracy afoot against Priyanka. She is the victim of a conspiracy hatched by her family and the party," Acharya Krishnam told ANI.
    Union Minister Smriti Irani said that Congress had conceded defeat from the constituency even before a vote was cast, adding that the opposition party would not have fielded a "proxy candidate" (Kishori Lal Sharma) if they were hopeful about the outcome of the polls.
    "I welcome the guests to Amethi. The fact that the Gandhis are not fighting in Amethi shows that even before a vote has been cast, they are losing from Amethi. If they had seen even a glimmer of hope, they would have contested and not put up a proxy candidate," Smriti Irani told reporters in Amethi.
    The voting in both seats will be held in the fifth phase of Lok Sabha elections on May 7. —ANI