Poll guru pitches for Rahul or Priyanka as CM

Poll guru pitches for Rahul or Priyanka as CM

Cong rejects idea as leaders want to see Rahul as party prez

Poll guru pitches for Rahul or Priyanka as CM

Congress poll strategist Prashant Kishor is keen to project Rahul Gandhi or Priyanka Vadra as the next Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister, but the party hopes to see Rahul as party president this year.

Last month, Kishor had made a presentation to the Gandhi family and suggested that either Rahul or Priyanka be projected as the chief ministerial candidate, a proposal that was not readily accepted.
“How do I know? You people keep running these stories, so you might me knowing,” Rahul Gandhi was quoted as saying by ANI.

The Congress was dismissive of Kishor’s suggestions and made it clear that they expected Rahul to take over as party president some time this year.

“I have no idea of what Prashant Kishor has said. Rahul Gandhi is an MP from Amethi. Rahul is the vice-president of the Congress and we expect Rahul to become president in 2016,” Congress spokesman Jairam Ramesh said at the party briefing.

Asked about Priyanka’s projection as the chief ministerial face, Ramesh merely said: “I have no knowledge about it.”

“Rahul cannot be the chief minister of 29 states,” he shot back in reply to a question.

The Congress is expected to revamp its team in Uttar Pradesh and replace state unit chief Nirmal Khatri with a leader from the upper caste. The names of Sheila Dikshit and Amethi royal Sanjay Singh are doing the rounds. The revamp is expected to be announced after May 19, the day results of the elections to Assam, West Bengal, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry are to be announced.

A section of Congress leaders, particularly the veterans, have not taken kindly to the importance given to Kishor, who also holds an official position as an Adviser to Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar.

Earlier, Kishor had scripted the successful Lok Sabha campaign of Narendra Modi in 2014 and later helmed the election strategy for Kumar during last year’s Bihar elections.

“These may be some stray thoughts of Kishor,” a Congress leader replied wryly when asked about Rahul as chief ministerial candidate for Uttar Pradesh.

Cong posters portray Rahul as ‘Singham’

The ongoing ‘poster war’ among political parties in Uttar Pradesh, where Assembly elections will be held early next year, intensified further with the Congress coming out with posters portraying Rahul Gandhi as ‘Singham’ (the supercop character played by Ajay Devgn in the movie Singham), DHNS reports from Lucknow. Rahul’s ‘Singham’ posters, which appeared in Gorakhpur town, about 275 km from here, on Monday, showed him holding a stick in his hand and gesturing toward his rivals, including UP Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, state BJP president Keshav Prasad Maurya, BSP supremo Mayawati and AIMIM chief Asauddin Owaisi.

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