De-coding Rahul Gandhi’s Wayanad contest
New Delhi, Apr 01: There is a lot of debate after Congress president, Rahul Gandhi chose to fight the elections from India's southernmost state, Kerala. On Sunday, the Congress announced that Rahul Gandhi would contest from both Amethi and Wayanad.
The decision to contest from Wayanad is an interesting one. Rahul is aiming at sending out a message that he is now a pan-India leader. Moreover Wayanad in North Kerala is also a point where Kerala, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu meet.
Moreover for Rahul Gandhi the battle in Amethi would be a tough one. In the 2014 elections at the height of the Modi wave, he won against Smriti Irani by a little over a lakh votes. Despite being defeated, Smriti Irani was made a union minister and she has over the years nurtured Amethi.
The Congress is aware that the battle in Amethi is not exactly an easy one. In addition to the battle against Irani, the Congress also fears that there could be some sabotage by the BSP-SP grand alliance in Uttar Pradesh. The trust factor is low despite both the SP and BSP not fielding candidates from Amethi.
After the candidature of Rahul Gandhi from Wayanad was announced, the BJP said that he chose this seat as he fears losing Amethi. The Left parties in Kerala too sounded upset with this decision. Their leaders said that Rahul Gandhi has decided to take on the Left at a time, when he says that his primary fight is against the BJP.
The Congress however feels that this decision would breathe fresh life into the Congress workers in Kerala and adjoining states. This decision would have an impact on the nearby areas of Kannur, Kasargod and Pathmapitha, where Sabarimala is located. His candidature from Kerala is also expected to enthuse cadres in neighbouring Tamil Nadu and Karnataka as well.