Rahul Gandhi of Raebareli and KL Sharma of Amethi are fielded.

03-05-2024, Fri…

several days of anticipation, the Congress on Friday announced Rahul Gandhi as its nominee from the Raebareli Lok Sabha district in Uttar Pradesh, which has historically supported the party. Gandhi will face off against Dinesh Pratap Singh of the BJP.

In the Lok Sabha, Rahul now represents Wayanad, and Smriti Irani is vying for a new term from Amethi. Sonia Gandhi, who joined the Rajya Sabha, held Raebareli. Kishori Lal Sharma, a party supporter from Amethi, the seat Rahul Gandhi lost to BJP leader Smriti Irani in the 2019 general elections, has also been nominated by the Congress party. Before handing over the reins to Rahul in 2004, Sonia Gandhi ran for office from this location in 1999. Irani had previously submitted her candidature as the BJP’s choice for Amethi. On May 20, these seats will go to polls in the fifth phase.


From 2004 till 2019, Rahul was the Lok Sabha representative for Amethi. From 1981 until his passing in 1991, Rajiv Gandhi, his father and the previous prime minister, was also an elected member of Amethi’s Lower House. The deadline to submit nominations for the seats that will be up for election on May 20 in the fifth round of the seven-phase general elections is this Friday. Since 1951, the party has won all but three Lok Sabha elections in the Congress heartland. Three times before Sonia Gandhi took office, Indira Gandhi had defeated Raebareli. In 1952 and 1957, the constituency also elected Feroze Gandhi, Indira’s Congress leader and spouse. Only twice, in 1962 and 1999 did a member of the Nehru-Gandhi family not seek the seat.


The Gandhi-Nehru family has long maintained strongholds in both constituencies, with its members having held these seats for many years. As part of its seat-sharing agreement with the Samajwadi Party (SP), the Congress is running for 17 Lok Sabha seats in Uttar Pradesh, and they have declared candidates for all but Amethi and Raebareli. Considered a Congress ‘pocket borough’, Rahul’s loss to Smriti Irani in Amethi during the 2019 polls was considered a major setback to the party’s standing in the country.

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