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Sonia Gandhi to contest from Rae Bareli again, say Reports

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Lucknow, Feb 19: Former Congress president Sonia Gandhi may contest the national election again from Raebareli, media reports said on Tuesday. The formal announcement on this is expected early next month.

Sonia Gandhi

It is not official and the formal announcement is expected only early next month, but Sonia Gandhi, 72, will contest, NDTV reported quoting sources.

Sonia Gandhi led the Congress for 19 years before handing over charge to her son Rahul Gandhi in 2017. She remains the chairperson of the UPA and is seen as the main negotiator with allies.

Sonia Gandhi has been unwell for the past few years and had vastly reduced her public role, letting her son and number two take the forefront in election campaigns and also party meetings.

Earlier speculations were rife in political circles that Sonia would vacate Rae Bareli for daughter Priyanka, who recently made her formal entry into politics. Sonia, who had contested and won from Amethi in 1999, had vacated the seat for son Rahul's first election in 2004 and switched to Rae Bareli.

Congress has been forced to contest the general elections alone after the Samajwadi Party (SP) and the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) kept it out of their pre-poll alliance.

On February 18, Priyanka told party workers from Uttar Pradesh's Bundelkhand region that they should not expect a "miracle" from her and the party's performance depends on its booth-level organisation.

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