Priyanka Gandhi Vadra enters active politics and will take on Modi and Yogi on their home turf

  • Priyanka Gandhi Vadra marks her entry into politics by joining All India Congress Committee as general secretary.
  • She will campaign in Uttar Pradesh East which includes Narendra Modi’s constituency Varanasi and Yogi Adityanath's constituency in Gorakhpur
  • Her entry into politics is expected to add vigour to Congress' recovering cadre, which had a demoralising defeat in 2014.
Priyanka Gandhi Vadra has been appointed as the general secretary at All India Congress Committee, marking her formal entry into politics.

According to an official statement, Vadra will be general secretary for Uttar Pradesh East, taking charge in the first week of February. Jyotiraditya Scindia will head Western UP. Uttar Pradesh is the largest state in India by population and has the most number of seats in the Parliament.

Uttar Pradesh East includes the constituencies of Varanasi, which is the constituency represented by the current Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and also Gorakhpur, which belongs to the state’s incumbent chief minister Yogi Adityanath who is also a strongman from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

Her strengths

Priyanka Gandhi, 47, is the daughter of former Indian prime minister Rajiv Gandhi, and the granddaughter of Indira Gandhi. In the past, she was mostly seen supporting brother Rahul Gandhi in campaigning efforts, but stayed away from actively participating in politics.

She might entering active politics just now but Priyanka has been under the media spotlight over the years. Her official foray into politics has been speculated about for a long time, more so around elections. She carries political weight at least in constituencies which are considered to be the Gandhi family bastions.

Her entry into politics is expected to add vigour to Congress, recovering cadre, which had a demoralising defeat in 2014. The incumbent United Progressive Alliance (UPA) led by the Congress was routed out, and the grand old party itself was left with 44 seats in the Lok Sabha, the lower house of the Parliament.

Priyanka's focus on eastern Uttar Pradesh (UP)-- aside from the appointment of another party heavyweight Jyotiraditya Scindia's focus on western part of the same province-- also signals the party's focus on a state that is politically significant than most others and currently in the grasp of rival BJP.

Her weak point

The Gandhi scion is no stranger to controversies either.

The Central Bureau of Investigation had filed 18 cases against Robert Vadra for alleged fraud in land acquisition, and the Enforcement Directorate is probing Vadra’s firms for alleged money laundering.

On Monday (january 21), the Rajasthan high court asked Robert Vadra and his partners in Skyline Hospitality Limited, including his mother Maureen Vadra, to appear before the Enforcement Directorate on February 12 to respond to allegations of money laundering by the firm.

The allegation around her husband, Robert Vadra, and his businesses are likely to raked up now more so than ever before by rivals.
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