Rahul Gandhi to contest second LS from Wayanad in Kerala
New Delhi: Congress president Rahul Gandhi will contest Lok Sabha elections from a second seat, apart from family stronghold Amethi, from Kerala’s Wayanad, announced the party on Sunday.
Rahul was named the candidate from Amethi in Uttar Pradesh in the first Congress list released earlier this month.
“We had conveyed to Rahul-ji that it would not have been correct to ignore the sentiments of the Congress workers from southern States,” said senior leader A.K. Antony who formally announced the decision.
Antony accepted that there were a few deliberations from Congress leaders and said, “All of us requested Rahul that ignoring unanimous requests from Southern states is not correct. Hence, Rahul must accept the demand.”
“Finally he has given the consent to contest from Wayanad”, said Antony.
The Congress decision triggered multiple jibes from the BJP. Union minister Smriti Irani, who would be contesting against Mr Gandhi for the second time from Amethi, tweeted that the constituency “drove him away”.
The Congress said the BJP comments were “immature”.
Meanwhile, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan accused Congress and Rahul’s decision as a fight against the Left.
“Rahul Gandhi is fighting in one of the 20 constituencies (in Kerala) and does not need to be seen as any different. We will fight him. He should have contested from a constituency where the BJP is contesting; it’s nothing but a fight against Left,” news agency ANI quoted CM Vijayan as saying.
Wayanad, a constituency in north Kerala, goes to polls on April 23.