Congress leaders are mounting pressure on their party chief Rahul Gandhi to contest in a second constituency, from the South, apart from his traditional seat of Amethi in Uttar Pradesh. While already Karnataka and Tamil Nadu Congress leaders asked him to contest from their respective states, now party leaders from Kerala are insisting him to contest from their state.
Kerala’s former Chief Minister and AICC General Secretary Oommen Chandy said today that the Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) has requested Rahul Gandhi to contest the Lok Sabha polls from Wayanad constituency in the state.
“We are requesting Rahul Gandhi to contest from south India. We requested him to contest from Wayanad constituency in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. We hope the decision is in our favour. I have discussed it with the proposed candidate for Wayanad and he also welcomed it,” Chandy said.
Congress sources in the state are indicating that Rahul Gandhi has already given his nod to contest the election from Wayanad.. KPCC president Mullappally Ramachandran is believed to have announced already that the Congress chief will fight from the Wayanad constituency.
On the other hand, Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala admitted that party’s Kerala has just conveyed their wishes and a decision will be taken in this regard soon.The Wayanad seat is a Congress stronghold and Rahul Gandhi was reported to have been reluctant to contest from Kerala since he does not know much about the south power corridor.
Congress’ MI Shahnawaz won the 2014 elections by a margin of 1,53,493 votes but passed away six months into office. The constituencies that are being offered to Rahul Gandhi in the south by respective state party units are, Bangalore Central, Bidar and Mysuru from Karnataka, Kanyakumari and Sivaganga in Tamil Nadu and Wayanad in Kerala.
The party, which is contesting 16 out of 20 Lok Sabha seats in Kerala, has announced the names of 14 candidates but has not declared its candidates from Wayanad and Vadakara.