Rahul Gandhi, who has left Karnataka on the edge and gone with his mother for her ‘annual health check-up’ abroad, has rubbed the Opposition the wrong way after he reportedly declared his prime ministerial aspirations.
Andhra Pradesh’s Telugu Desam Party’s minister Kalava Srinivasulu, on Sunday, announced that if the party goes for pre-poll alliance then the party will not accept Congress President Rahul Gandhi as the prime ministerial candidate for the 2019 elections. Claiming that TDP has never had an equation with Congress, he said that if an alternative to join hands with Congress comes up, Rahul Gandhi will not be the prime ministerial face of a united front. Interestingly, TDP’s Chandrababu Naidu was seen sharing the stage with Congress President Rahul Gandhi during the swearing-in ceremony of Karnataka Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy.
This comes close on heels of leaders of other regional parties rejecting Rahul Gandhi’s self-nomination as the prime ministerial candidate.
It is speculated that Bahujan Samaj Party, which has 4 seats in Rajya Sabha and zero seats in Lok Sabha, wants Mayawati as the prime ministerial candidate. That is not all! West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee who has on quite a few occasions snubbed Congress President Rahul Gandhi, has a huge fan following on social media which believes she is fit to become the Prime Minister in 2019. In fact, she has even pitched for a federal front and has met with Opposition chief minister, K. Chandrashekhar Rao, N. Chandrababu Naidu, Arvind Kejriwal and Naveen Pattanaik. Taking a leaf from this drama, Sharad Pawar, too, has ‘warned‘ Rahul Gandhi over his remarks urging him not to make such ‘premature remarks’ before the parliamentary elections are concluded.
Whether it has anything to do with the captain of the sinking ship Rahul Gandhi sinking it further by bringing down seat tally in Karnataka from 122 in 2013 to 78 in 2018 or having lost 3 consecutive elections in 6 months of him taking over the top post in Congress, one would never know!