In poll-bound Kerala, Congress banks on the Rahul Gandhi card

In poll-bound Kerala, Congress banks on the Rahul Gandhi card

Going through one of many hardest electoral battles since its inception 4 many years in the past in Kerala, the Congress-led United Democratic Entrance (UDF) has requested its mascot Rahul Gandhi, additionally a Member of Parliament from north Kerala’s Wayanad, to pitch his tent within the state and marketing campaign vigorously to foil the Left’s bid to proceed in energy within the upcoming meeting elections, scheduled for April 6.

In keeping with senior Congress leaders, the occasion feels that Gandhi’s presence will entice minority voters who shifted to the ruling Left Democratic Entrance (LDF) in an enormous approach within the native physique elections in December. That was a wake-up name for the occasion, which in any other case thought that it’ll nearly routinely return to energy, given the electoral sample within the state, the place voters have alternated between the 2 rival fronts.

So as to add to the occasion’s woes, at the very least 4 pre-poll surveys have given an edge to the ruling Left. However occasion watchers declare the state of affairs will not be that bleak for the Congress, and the euphoria generated by the Left’s belligerent public relations blitz needn’t mirror in ballots. However they admit early warnings have compelled the occasion out of its slumber and handle points comparable to inner factionalism.

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“Many surveys have gone flawed in Kerala. It’s unfair to gauge political temper basing native physique elections. Essentially the most corrupt regime the state has ever seen is portray a rosy image to cover its discomfort,” mentioned opposition chief Ramesh Chennithala, one of many contenders for the chief ministerial place throughout the Congress.

Senior occasion leaders mentioned Gandhi has agreed to marketing campaign extensively within the state, the place he enjoys comparatively excessive in style rankings. He has already made two journeys to the state in final two months. Sensing hazard, the ruling Communist Social gathering of India (Marxist) has stepped its assault on Gandhi, brazenly asking him to not weaken secular forces within the state and use his vitality in containing saffron forces in north Indian states.

LDF leaders admit in non-public that Gandhi’s frequent journeys to the state can flip the tables prefer it did within the final parliament ballot, through which the Left misplaced all however one of many 20 Lok Sabha seats. Gandhi’s entry in Wayanad as a candidate and the federal government’s dealing with of the emotional Sabarimala temple subject had been cited for the Congress-led UDF sweep in 2019.

“Gandhi talks huge about unity of secular forces to comprise saffron surge. As an alternative of supporting secular forces which are preventing communal parts, he’s weakening secular-democratic forces in Kerala,” mentioned Politburo member M A Child, including Gandhi’s criticism of the BJP was solely confined to his phrases. Chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan additionally criticised Gandhi lately, saying his picture ops had been good for state tourism. Throughout his final go to, Gandhi led a tractor rally in Wayanad and swam in sea off Kollam coast and movies of each turned viral on social media.

“Rahul Gandhi is a unifying issue within the state. He wields good affect amongst two minority communities that kind 45% voters and his presence will make a lot distinction. His presence additionally comprise rising faction feud within the occasion,” mentioned political commentator Sunnykutty Abraham. Gandhi can also be understood to have grow to be extra assertive within the candidate choice course of, and the occasion management has made it clear that younger and ladies candidates can be prioritised in ticket choice.

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