Rahul's mega rally in Chikkamagaluru next month

Rahul's mega rally  in Chikkamagaluru  next month
Tipped to take over as Congress president, Rahul Gandhi is scheduled to address a mega rally in Chikkamagaluru to coincide with the birth centenary celebrations of late prime minister Indira Gandhi next month.

The three-day programme in Chikkamagaluru from November 19 will witness the presence of top Congress leaders and also mark the end of the year-long birth centenary celebrations of Indira Gandhi.

“We are yet to finalise the dates for Rahul’s visit to Chikkamagaluru,” AICC General Secretary K C Venugopal told DH. Chikkamagaluru has a special place for the Congress as it was from here that Indira Gandhi made her electoral comeback after her defeat in the Lok Sabha election in 1977, post-Emergency.

Indira loyalist D B Chandre Gowda had vacated the Lok Sabha seat to allow a bypoll. Indira Gandhi had defeated former chief minister and Janata Party candidate Veerendra Patil by a margin of 77,000 votes.

The buzz in the political circles here is that even Rahul may choose to contest the Lok Sabha elections from Karnataka in addition to his traditional seat Amethi to signal his wider acceptance across the country. However, Venugopal termed the reports  “baseless”.

Indira Gandhi had successfully contested the 1980 Lok Sabha polls from Medak in undivided Andhra Pradesh. She was a member of the Lok Sabha from Medak when she was assassinated in 1984.

The Chikkamagaluru rally is also seen as the launch of the Karnataka Assembly elections scheduled to be held in April-May next year. Karnataka is the only major state where the Congress is in power and it has launched a determined bid to retain it by ironing out the differences among various factions and declaring Chief Minister Siddaramaiah as the leader at least a year in advance.

Rahul is also expected to participate in a roadshow in Chikkamagaluru before proceeding to Shivamogga.
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