Putting an end to speculations, Congress today announced that Rahul Gandhi will be contesting from Kerala’s Wayanad constituency. The Congress chief, who has already announced candidature from Amethi in Uttar Pradesh, will be contesting from Wayanad as his second seat.
The announcement was made by senior party leader AK Antony at a press conference in New Delhi. “Rahul Gandhi will contest from Wayanad parliamentary constituency in Kerala,” he said. There were several requests for Rahul to contest from Wayanad, he added.
Speculations of the Gandhi scion’s candidature from the southern state were doing the rounds for more than a week with senior Congress leader pitching for the same and also fear of facing severe competition from BJP’s union minister Smriti Irani at his traditional seat of Amethi.
Former Kerala Chief Minister and party general secretary Oommen Chandy had announced the Gandhi scion’s candidature on March 23. Kozhikode DCC president T Siddique, who was then considered the front-runner for the Wayanad seat, said he was ready to step aside for Rahul.
After multiple reports and rumours, Congress has put an end to the speculations with the announcement of Rahul candidature which will be seen as a huge boost for the party’s fortunes in the southern states.
The Wayanad seat has been a Congress stronghold with late M I Shanavas representing the constituency for the past two terms. He had won the first term convincingly with a margin of over 1.5 lakhs. However, for his second term, Shanavas barely managed a win with a margin of 20,000 votes. The seat has been vacant since his death in November 2018.