By Pradeep Kapoor
LUCKNOW: With her three hours, maun vrat, at the statue of Mahatma Gandhi on the day she arrived Lucknow, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra not only stumped the ruling party but also scored over other opposition parties.
With her decision to sit in dharna at the statue of Mahatma Gandhi to protest against the Uttar Pradesh government’s bungling in Panchayat Polls, mishandling of pandemic and deterioration in law order and other issues Priyanka Gandhi Vadra made it clear that she would hit street on people’s issues.
Priyanka’s visit to Lakhimpur Kheri to meet Samajwadi Party backed woman candidate Ritu Singh and her proposer Anita Yadav who were assaulted allegedly by BJP workers during recent Panchayat chief polls made tremendous impact on women voters all over the state. It may be mentioned that women voters are very decisive in the elections.
Significantly Priyanka Gandhi made it clear that her party was open for alliance but final decision would be taken at an appropriate time.
It may be mentioned that Congress had bad experience of alliance with BSP in 1996 when Kanshiram bargained for 300 seats leaving only 125 seats for national party.
Again Congress had bad experience with Samajwadi Party in 2017 assembly polls. Congress had earned tremendous goodwill through agitation during Samajwadi Party rule but had faced anti-incumbency factor when Akhilesh Yadav and Rahul Gandhi joined hands, In 2017 state polls.
Three-day visit of Priyanka Gandhi Vadra in Lucknow and her address to party leaders and workers not only charged the political atmosphere in the state but also boosted the morale of party workers.
Although Priyanka Gandhi Vadra visited Lucknow after a gap of 19 months due to pandemic but she was in constant touch party leaders and workers through regular video meetings.
During pandemic also, she galvanised party leaders and workers to reach out to masses and migratory labourers to attend their issues. Senior leaders also courted arrests to protest against problems being faced by the people.
Priyanka Gandhi strongly said she was not a political tourist as claimed by BJP but assured the party leaders and workers that she would be available to them all through in future and spend more time in the state.
The biggest challenge before Congress is lack of organisation at the grass root level and capacity to translate the goodwill generated by Priyanka Gandhi into votes. (IPA Service)