Sonia chooses Rae Bareli LS seat, files nomination
Making yet another bid to enter Lok Sabha through the family’s pocket borough in Uttar Pradesh, Congress President Sonia Gandhi on Wednesday filed her nomination papers from the Rae Bareli Lok Sabha constituency.
Ms. Gandhi, 67, who will be seeking re-election to the seat, was accompanied by party’s vice president and her son, Rahul Gandhi while presenting her papers before the Returning Officer.
While SP has decided not to field anyone against her and Mr. Rahul, BJP has fielded Supreme Court lawyer Ajay Aggarwal. The AAP is yet to announce a candidate.
“The people of Rae Bareli have adopted me with immense affection and I hope they will make me victorious again in the election,” she told reporters in a brief interaction after filing her nomination.
Arriving from Delhi in the morning, Sonia Gandhi was given a rapturous welcome from the Fursatganj airport to the district collectorate office. With Mr. Rahul at the steering wheel, Ms. Gandhi was welcomed with showering of rose petals all the way.
Before she filed the nomination, a havan was performed at the local Congress office in which Sonia and Rahul participated. Old family loyalist Satish Sharma along with her lawyer was also present at the time of filing of nominations.
The constituency has been a Nehru-Gandhi family bastion since the 1960s. Indira Gandhi won it for the first time in 1967, taking over after the death of her husband Feroz, who was also an MP from Rae Bareli.
Ms. Gandhi is a three time MP from Rae Bareli, including once elected in a by-election in 2006, after she resigned over office of profit issue. In 2004 elections she shifted to Rae Bareli from Amethi, leaving it to her son Rahul Gandhi.
In 1999, she won from Amethi and had also defeated BJP’s Shushma Swaraj from the Bellary Lok Sabha constituency.
Ms. Gandhi was given a rousing reception all along the route with women, youth and children shouting slogans and showering flower petals on her.
She got down at Ghosiyana Road and other places to meet her electorate which comprised a large number of women.