Rahul's final push to boost a struggling party

Rahul's final push to boost a struggling party

Buoyed by the public response, Rahul Gandhi on Thursday hit the road to give a final push to the Congress campaign for the Delhi elections where it is struggling to keep itself relevant.

Rahul took out a roadshow in Sultanpur Majra locality in North-West Delhi where he attracted massive crowd in the resettlement colony that has elected Congress leader Jai Kishan for three consecutive terms.

The Congress sources said the event was finalised in the wee hours of Thursday as the party was pleasantly surprised by the public response.

The Congress had slumped from 43 seats in 2008 elections to just eight seats in the 70-member Assembly in the 2013 elections that had thrown up a hung house.

Earlier, Congress shown little enthusiasm in holding rallies of Sonia Gandhi and Rahul, but it changed plans after seeing the unexpected turnout for its public meetings.

Originally, Rahul was to address one public meeting and participate in one roadshow. But as curtains came down on campaigning for the February 7 elections, Rahul had addressed two public meetings and under taken three roadshows.

“We have never seen such a response from the people before,” senior Congress leader P C Chacko, who is in-charge of party affairs in Delhi, told Deccan Herald.

Chacko said the party was confident of “surprise results”.
A better performance by the Congress could bring electoral dividends for the BJP. Congress leaders hope that massive turnout for the party campaign would convert into votes.

Earlier, Rahul had addressed public meetings at Shastri Park and Jahangirpuri. He had kicked off the Delhi campaign by participating in a roadshow in Govindpuri. This was followed by a massive roadshow in Chandni Chowk. Congress President Sonia Gandhi had addressed a rally in Meethapur village in south Delhi.

Interestingly, the Congress had targeted slum clusters and minority dominated areas for programmes of Rahul and Sonia. The Aam Aadmi Party had snatched this traditional support base of the Congress in the 2013 elections.

The Congress has promised better public transport including a monorail, and the ‘Right to Shelter’ and ‘housing and property rights’ for people of Delhi.
DH News Service

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