As flower petals rained from terrace tops, Rahul Gandhi waved at the Amethi crowd flanked by his family on both sides. The roadshow in Amethi has been a tradition ever since Rahul Gandhi took over the reins from his mother Sonia Gandhi.
The Congress president filed his nomination papers in Amethi seeking re-election from the Gandhi bastion for the fourth time.
What made this roadshow starkly different from the past were not only the political equations, but also the display of family bonding in the Gandhi family. In times when the ruling BJP has relentlessly attacked the Congress for its dynastic politics, the roadshow saw Rahul accompanied by his young niece Miraya and nephew Rehaan. The children waived at the crowd as they took their first lessons in political education.
Rahul was seen talking to Rehaan who wore a white kurta-pyjama and a Nehru jacket. Rehaan has been to the Gandhi bastion earlier as well and has stayed overnight.
On the other hand, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, the Congress general secretary was seen talking and explaining to Miraya the scenes that were unfolding.
This is not the first time when politicians have had their children accompany them in political rallies. It is often seen as an attempt to showcase the younger generation to the public. Priyanka’s children would be the sixth generation of the Gandhi family in politics if they take the plunge in future.
Rahul’s brother-in-law Robert Vadra was also seen cheering and engaging with Congress workers. As Rahul completed a 3-kilometre roadshow, it culminated in the district manager magistrate office. The group was later joined by Sonia Gandhi, the UPA chairperson, for the nomination filing.
However, Miraya and Rehaan were the stars of the show and selfies of them with mother Priyanka went viral on social media.
The pictures were also posted from Congress party’s Twitter handle:
Congress (@INCIndia) April 10, 2019
Priyanka tweeted to add, “This one is a lot better than the selfie I was trying to take!”
With this, the political battle lines are drawn. Amethi will see the nomination filing of Smriti Irani on May 11, when the first phase of polling takes place. She will be accompanied by Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and other BJP leaders.
BJP is hell bent on making Amethi a prestige battle and has dictated the state leadership to put up better show. Amethi will go to polls on the May 6 in the fifth phase of polling.