THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: A day after high expectations of an imminent formal announcement of Rahul Gandhi’s candidature from Wayanad, the KPCC leaders were submitted to anxious silence in the absence of confirmation so far from the AICC.
On Saturday, in a surprise political move, AICC general secretary and former Chief Minister Oommen Chandy had announced that the party’s national president Rahul, will be contesting from Wayanad. The announcement was cheered by T Siddique, the frontrunner for the seat, and endorsed by the Congress
Legislature Party leader Ramesh Chennithala and KPCC president Mullappally Ramachandran. Congress’ coalition partners - Indian Union Muslim League, Kerala Congress (M) and RSP - welcomed the decision and said it would boost the UDF’s political fortunes.
However, on Sunday, the Congress and UDF leaders were tight-lipped over Rahul’s candidature. While addressing the Press, Chennithala said the state leadership has requested Rahul to contest from Wayanad.
The Opposition leader did not give a confirmation but said the high command and the party election committee have to do it.
KPCC president Mullappally Ramachandran also remained silent and said it is for the high command to announce it. Senior leader P C Chacko told Express over the telephone the final decision will be out only on Monday after the party election committee meeting.
A senior Congress leader, who is in the know of things, told Express: “Rahul is certain to contest from Wayanad. A leader like Oommen Chandy will not utter a word without getting proper confirmation from the AICC president.”
Sources said it was a swift political move by the state Congress leaders, who welcomed Rahul with a red carpet and convinced him that his candidature from Wayanad will help the party garner a large number of seats in south India. Rahul is learnt to have confirmed his candidature from Wayanad, but it is for the party election committee to make the formal announcement.
‘Rahul running away from UP’
Bareilly: Railways Minister Piyush Goyal attacked Rahul Gandhi over reports that the Congress leader might contest from Wayanad other than Amethi.
“He (Rahul) is running away from UP. Far from UP, he’s going to Kerala and will contest the elections from there. Smriti Irani will register a massive win from Amethi,” Goyal said.
The BJP leader described the Congress as being a party of “one family”.