Indian Politics- Priyanka magic' draws thousands at debut rally in India

India’s powerful Nehru-Gandhi dynasty on Monday unleashed its newest star with thousands turning out to see Priyanka Gandhi Vadra speak at her first rally as the country gears up for a general election.
Crowds showered rose petals on the great-granddaughter of India’s founding leader Jawaharlal Nehru as she took an open bus tour through Lucknow, capital of the key northern state of Uttar Pradesh.
The opposition Congress party is counting on the 47-year-old daughter of assassinated premier Rajiv Gandhi to boost its campaign against nationalist Hindu Prime Minister Narendra Modi who is expected to call an election in April.
Priyanka and elder brother Rahul Gandhi, the Congress president, waved at cheering supporters who chanted their names while dancing to drums. Many wore pink t-shirts emblazoned with her picture.
At a rally she called for supporters to join a campaign to build “a new future” for India and a “new kind of politics where everyone is a stakeholder”.
The Nehru-Gandhi family has dominated Indian politics since independence in 1947 but Priyanka had for years resisted calls to enter the political fray. This ended last month when she accepted a key party post.
Priyanka opened a Twitter account Monday and drew more than 85,000 followers in hours.
Congress, tainted by scandal, was obliterated in the 2014 polls by Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party, is banking on “Priyanka magic” to win votes. It especially needs a breakthrough in Uttar Pradesh where the BJP won 71 of the state’s 80 seats in 2014.
Analysts say Modi faces a tougher fight this time from Congress which won a clutch of state polls in late 2018, tapping into discontent over the lack of new jobs and farm debt.
The prime minister has repeatedly called on voters to shrug off “family rule” which he says hasruined  IndiaIndia’s Priyanka Gandhi officially entered politics on Wednesday ahead of a looming national election, joining the opposition campaign in a crucial state where the party her family founded hopes to unseat Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Priyanka — whose father, grandmother and great-grandfather were all prime ministers — was appointed Congress party chief in the east of Uttar Pradesh, considered India’s most politically important state.

She will report to her brother Rahul, a fellow scion of the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty, who heads the main opposition party that ruled India for much of its post-independence history.
Priyanka, 47, is popular within Congress but the reigns were passed to her older brother Rahul when their mother Sonia stepped back from the helm in 2017.

Priyanka Gandhi steps up to fight for Congress party

Rahul, 48, said he was “very happy that my sister, who is very capable and hardworking, will now work with me”, as Congress campaigns in a tough election expected by May.

“Congress is not going to be on (the) back foot. It will be on the front foot,” the opposition leader told reporters.

Priyanka is expected to assume her duties in February, the party said in a statement.

She will oversee the party’s campaign in eastern Uttar Pradesh, home to Modi’s constituency in the holy Hindu city of Varanasi.

But the region is more than just symbolic.

Uttar Pradesh is the heartland of Hindi-speaking India, a bellweather state and the country’s most populous with more than 200 million people.

With 80 seats in the lower house of parliament in Delhi, victory in Uttar Pradesh is a key stepping stone to forming a national government.

Though she has campaigned informally in past elections, Priyanka’s official elevation to a key Congress post was seen as a long time in the making.

Can Priyanka save the Congress party?

Some party loyalists see Priyanka as more affable and charismatic than her older brother, and had long lobbied for her to play a bigger role.

Rahul’s leadership credentials were hammered in the wake of 2014, when Congress was thumped in the polls by Modi and his Bharatiya Janata Party.

Modi won a record mandate and stormed to victory with the Hindu nationalist BJP, gaining ground with decisive wins in key states including Uttar Pradesh, as Gandhi’s stewardship took a battering.

But the Congress leader has bounced back, with the party taking back three heartland states from the BJP in December, delivering momentum as the national election looms.

Priyanka’s appointment comes as Congress was left out of an opposition alliance against Modi between two regional parties in Uttar Pradesh in recent weeks.

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South Punjab News : Indian Politics- Priyanka magic' draws thousands at debut rally in India
Indian Politics- Priyanka magic' draws thousands at debut rally in India
The prime minister has repeatedly called on voters to shrug off “family rule” which he says hasruined IndiaIndia’s Priyanka Gandhi officially entered politics on Wednesday ahead of a looming national election, joining the opposition campaign in a crucial state where the party her family founded hopes to unseat Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
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South Punjab News
https://www.southpunjabnews.com/2019/02/indian-politics-priyanka-magic-draws.html
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