15 June, 2021

Prognosis Of A Possible Triangle In Uttar Pradesh

Priyanka Gandhi won’t have it easy as getting Congress into the BJP-vs-SP-BSP contest would take a turnaround in eastern UP, her party’s weakest field

Spin V For Victory
Some think Priyanka is the Congress trump card
Photograph by PTI
Prognosis Of A Possible Triangle In Uttar Pradesh

The appointment of Priyanka Gandhi as Congress general secretary in charge of the eastern Uttar Pradesh campaign for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections has raised several questions. Can Priyanka change the fortunes of the Congress in UP in general, and its eastern region in particular? Can UP witness a truly triangular contest among the Congress, the SP-BSP alliance and the NDA? And if there is indeed a Congress rev­ival, will it damage the BJP more or the SP-BSP?

There is a shared belief that nothing is impossible in politics; sometimes fortunes of parties change within a fortnight or even less. Some beli­eve Priyanka is the trump card of the Congress who would be able to revive the party in UP, bringing on a triangular contest in 2019. Others believe it is easier said than done.

The task for Priyanka is not easy because the party has been lying low after its good performance in the 2009 Lok Sabha elections, in which it won 21 of UP’s 80 seats with 18.3 per cent voteshare. In 2014, however, the party managed to poll only 7.5 per cent votes and bagged only...

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