In a decision which could create few more tremors in an already devastated party – Congress, Sonia Gandhi is unlikely to accept her daughter and AICC general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra’s bid to get elected to Rajya Sabha. This move may threaten her son Rahul Gandhi’s political ambitions, reports Sunday Guardian.
Sonia Gandhi, the interim president of the party, reportedly has strong reservations regarding her daughter and AICC general secretary, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra’s entry into the Rajya Sabha.
The election process for the Rajya Sabha is slated to commence next week and on its present strength, the Congress can readily obtain at least 10 seats from various states. However, it is almost certain that Priyanka Gandhi Vadra will not be making her Parliamentary debut. Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi has already left the country clearing the final list which does not mention her daughter.
Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath had offered Priyanka a safe berth to the Upper House out of the two seats that the Congress can comfortably win from the state. However, Sonia Gandhi was not too enthusiastic about the proposal.
Reportedly, Sonia Gandhi believes that Priyanka Gandhi Vadra’s entry into Parliament will undermine Rahul Gandhi’s overall position as most Congress leaders would prefer her over her brother in terms of leading the party. Citing sources, Sunday Guardian reported that during the past two days, Sonia and Priyanka had a detailed discussion on the subject, and Sonia Gandhi has categorically denied any chance to Priyanka Vadra to surpass her brother by getting elected to Rajya Sabha.
Reportedly, Priyanka Vadra has made a strong appeal to her mother to reconsider her decision. She informed her that she was being made a sacrificial goat by assigning her the toughest state of Uttar Pradesh, where the outcome in 2022 Assembly polls was hardly expected to tilt in the favour of the Congress and urged that she should at least be made a member of the Rajya Sabha.
According to Priyanka Gandhi, her election to Rajya Sabha would also ensure that she will have an official accommodation in the capital. Currently, she continues to live in the Lodhi Road government accommodation despite removal of SPG cover. To make her case stronger, she has reportedly talked to senior Congress leaders to put in a good word for herself to her mother. However, these leaders are reluctant to speak up as Sonia may see it as interference and an attempt to divide the family.
Other than Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, there are various other Congress leaders who are top contenders for the Rajya Sabha seat. Many among these are also the ones who lost last 2019 Lok Sabha polls, like Digvijaya Singh, Jyotiraditya Scindia, Randeep Surjewala amongst others. Meanwhile, 92-year-old Motilal Vohra, the senior-most living and active Congress leader, is also hopeful of getting another term from Chhattisgarh.