Gandhi charisma fading? Congress humbled in Rae Bareli, Amethi

March 6th, 2012 - 7:28 pm ICT by IANS  

Sonia Gandhi Lucknow, March 6 (IANS) The charisma of the younger Gandhis didn’t seem to have worked, even in the family pocketboroughs in Uttar Pradesh. In a major setback, the Congress has lost all the seats in Rae Bareli, represented in the Lok Sabha by party president Sonia Gandhi.

Four of the seats in Rae Bareli were bagged by the Samajwadi Party while the fifth went to the Peace Party, the Election Commission sources said.

In the five-seat Amethi Lok Sabha constituency, represented by Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi, the Congress is leading in three seats and the SP in two.

Sonia Gandhi’s daughter Priyanka Vadra had promised her mother a perfect 10 in the two constituencies.

“I promise Ma that we will get her all the 10 seats of Rae Bareli and Amethi,” Vadra said while addressing a rally on Valentine’s Day Feb 14.

The setback in the family fiefs has come as a big shock to the party, which was banking on the 41-year-old Rahul Gandhi to set the stage for revival of the party in Uttar Pradesh.

In both Amethi and Rae Bareli not just Rahul but Priyanka also held rallies and unleashed their charm offensive. Despite her ill health, Sonia Gandhi found time to campaign in these family seats, but it looks like the Gandhi charisma didn’t quite charm the people of the constituencies.

“There may be many reasons. We will do our analysis,” said Law Minister Salman Khurshid, a former president of the Uttar Pradesh Congress Committee, when asked to comment on the Congress setbacks in Amethi and Rae Bareli. Khurshid’s wife Louis Khurshid lost from the Farukkhabad assembly seat.

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