Rajat Sharma


AKB30 After weeks of keeping everybody in suspense, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi decided to contest from his mother Sonia Gandhi’s Rae Bareli constituency, and, on Friday, filed his nomination in the presence of his mother, sister Priyanka, brother-in-law Robert Vadra and party president Mallikarjun Kharge. Rahul decided not to contest from his traditional constituency Amethi, and in his place, family loyalist Kishori Lal Sharma filed his nomination to take on Union Minister Smriti Irani. Priyanka Gandhi opted not to contest and decided to devote her time to campaigning for party candidates. From the BJP camp, news came about Prime Minister Narendra Modi deciding to file his nomination in Varanasi on May 14. He will reach the city a day earlier, perform prayers before Kashi Vishwanath and take out a road show, While Congress leaders described Rahul’s decision to contest from Rae Bareli as a strategic decision, BJP described Rahul as ‘Ranchhod Das’ (one who runs away from fight). Prime Minister Narendra Modi said at his election rally that Rahul was losing in Wayanad, Kerala, and this was the reason why he opted for a safe seat in Rae Bareli. Congress sources said, surveys were conducted in both Amethi and Rae Bareli and it was found that the latter would be a safer seat for Rahul. Home Minister Amit Shah said at a Karnataka rally that Sonia Gandhi has again opted to launch her son and this time “the launchpad has been shifted from Amethi to Rae Bareli”. Watching the visuals of Rahul and his entourage going to file nomination in Rae Bareli, one gets the impression that Rahul appeared to be clearly disinterested. Some Congress leaders said that Rahul was unwilling to contest from both seats, but it was their ally Samajwadi Party which put pressure on Rahul to contest from UP. Reportedly, SP supremo Akhilesh Yadav put condition that Rahul or Priyanka should contest from Amethi, and this would have a statewide impact. Congress leaders were surprised why Priyanka Gandhi was not fielded from Rae Bareli, because it was she who was looking after this constituency for her ailing mother Sonia in Rae Bareli, for the last five years. An impression had gained ground that Sonia was grooming Priyanka as her successor in Rae Bareli. Congress leaders said, it was ultimately the Gandhi family’s decision and party leaders had no role in it. At the same time, Robert Vadra’s dreams of contesting from Amethi have also crashed. Vadra had been telling the media for the last several weeks that he was willing to contest from Amethi. He even went to the extent of saying that the voters of Amethi want him to contest. Ultimately, the family’s decision prevailed. Kishori Lal Sharma, the man picked up by Gandhi family, to take on Smriti Irani in Amethi, is originally from Ludhiana, Punjab. He first came to Amethi in 1983. Rajiv Gandhi was then the Congress MP, and Sharma looked after both Amethi and Rae Bareli constituencies as the family’s manager. In 2019, when Rahul Gandhi lost to Smriti Irani in Amethi, Congress leaders held K L Sharma responsible, but both Sonia and Priyanka Gandhi defended Sharma. On Friday, only Priyanka Gandhi was present when Sharma filed his nomination in Amethi. Bith Sonia and Rahul were absent. Priyanka held an impromptu road show for K L Sharma and sought people’s support. When Priyanka was asked by reporters whether Sharma would be able to defeat Smriti Irani, she replied, “it was K L Sharma who was behind Sonia Gandhi’s victory in 1999 and since then, he has been the manager during all elections. Sharma know every village and family in Amethi closely and he will definitely win.” One feels somewhat surprised how our leaders play games with voters during elections. Was it not the right of voters in Wayanad to know that their candidate Rahul would be contesting from some other seat in UP? This fact was deliberately kept secret from the people of Wayanad till polling was over in Kerala. Rahul Gandhi consistently denied that he would contest from Amethi or Rae Bareli.Every leader in Congress knew that any decision about Amethi or Rae Bareli would be taken after voting in Wayand was over. This was the reason why Congress refrained from annoucing its candidates from both seats in UP. The people of Wayanad had the right to know that Rahul would also be contesting from Rae Bareli. Similarly, the voters of Hassan in Karnataka were deliberately cheated. Most of the Congress and BJP leaders in the state knew what H D Devegowda’s grandson Prajwal Revanna had done and many of them had watched his sex videos on pen drive. BJP wa in alliance with Devegowda’s Janata Dal-S in Karnataka and one can understand BJP’s compulsion. There was no such compulsion for Congress party. The party is ruling Karnataka and controls the state police. Evidence was there, but most of the leaders sat silent watching the ‘tamasha’. They felt their Vokkaliga vote banks would be dented if any action was taken before polling. Just imagine. These leaders were expecting a backlash from Vokkaliga voters if action was taken against a sex fiend who sexually exploited hundreds of women. The pendrive was made available by his own driver. What can the voters do now? Many of them must have voted Prajwal Revanna without knowing the truth. My belief is: Every voter must have the right to know the truth before casting the vote, whether it is Wayanad or Hassan. The truth was concealed from voters in both cases.

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