Priyanka Gandhi Vadra Monday for the first time attended a formal strategy session of the Congress meant to take stock of the party’s campaign in Uttar Pradesh, once again setting off speculation that she will play a larger role in the campaign for the Assembly polls in the state.
Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi did not attend the strategy session. While party leaders said Rahul was not expected to attend the session, but Priyanka’s decision to take part in it came as a surprise.
Priyanka, according to sources, did not speak much at the meeting convened by Ghulam Nabi Azad and attended by UP Congress chief Raj Babbar, the party’s chief ministerial candidate, Sheila Dikshit, the heads of the campaign and
coordination committees, AICC secretaries and senior vice-presidents from Uttar Pradesh. The meeting was held at the party’s campaign nerve centre at 15 Gurdwara Rakabganj Road.
“She had queries. She asked about the response to Kisan Mang Patras, which the party had distributed among farmers during Rahul’s yatra, the response to the various yatras that the party has rolled out in UP,” said a senior leader, who attended the nearly three-hour meeting.
Party’s campaign strategist Prashant Kishor did not attend the meeting. Sources said there was no discussion on Priyanka’s campaign programme, although party leaders expect her to hit the ground running as the campaign picks up after the announcement of the elections.
While Priyanka had constantly interacted with Azad, Dikshit and other top leaders and met them frequently, this is the first time that she attended a formal meeting to take stock of the progress in the campaign.
Watch what else is making news:
The leaders decided to extend the Rahul Sandesh Yatra in UP till November 10.
Talking about Priyanka’s presence at the meeting, Congress spokesperson R P N Singh said: “It is for her to decide what steps she would like to take within the party and whether to work outside Rae Bareli and Amethi.”
Dikshit said the Congress is eagerly waiting for Priyanka to campaign in UP.