03 August, 2021

First Impressions From East UP As Priyanka Gandhi Vadra Makes Political Debut

Priyanka Gandhi’s appeal seems to be largely missing in areas beyond the Congress strongholds of Amethi and Rae Bareli. However, she is yet to begin her campaign and get into combative mode to wrest eastern UP for her party.

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Priyanka Gandhi smiles from a hoarding in Rae Bareli
Photograph by Tribhuvan Tiwari
First Impressions From East UP As Priyanka Gandhi Vadra Makes Political Debut

Big hoardings congratulating Priyanka Gandhi on behalf of district Congress leaders, some wearing sunglasses, have sprung up near the Feroze Gandhi College in Rae Bareli, the parliamentary constituency of former Congress president Sonia Gandhi. ­Under their gaze, teenagers with new-age haircuts go about speeding on their bikes, honking obsessively. Last week, the Congress leadership ­appointed ­Priyanka Gandhi the party in-charge for eastern Uttar Pradesh.

At the national level, her elevation to the position has provided much grist to media mills, triggering questions like will she boost the Congress’s electoral prospects in the forthcoming general elections, will she take up some of PM Narendra Modi’s media space, will she contest from Rae Bareli and so on. In her family’s traditional constituency, she deli­vered a spontaneous and effortlessly confident speech to much applause. But how does the eastern UP terrain look for her...

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