Thiruvananthapuram: CWC member P.C. Chacko’s intervention by engaging NCP’s Sharad Pawar and Loktantrik Janata Dal’s Sharad Yadav had brought pressure on Congress president Rahul Gandhi’s stand on the Wayanad candidature. However, key UDF ally, Muslim League, continued to plump for Rahul even after Chandy ‘retracted’.
Mr Chacko had reiterated to DC on Wednesday that Mr Gandhi was keen to withdraw after a warning that a wrong message will be delivered if he contests in Kerala. He had maintained that the BJP had not got following in Wayanad. Unfortunately, the main plotters behind the candidature of Rahul Gandhi in Wayanad, CWC leaders A.K. Antony and K.C. Venugopal had not thought of the ramifications his candidature would lead to.
Reports coming from New Delhi reveal that the UPA had informed Mr Gandhi that it was not right to contest against the Left parties who are allies in the secular front.
Sharad Pawar and Sharad Yadav had also been successful in convincing Mr Gandhi that the future alliance with the Left parties will not work out if he contests against the CPI candidate in Wayanad. So, now it is almost clear Mr Gandhi will fight from Karnataka, hopefully from a seat where the Congress and JD(S) have got a footing. An AICC secretary said that Mr Gandhi will be reaching Karnataka during the weekend.
“Rahul Gandhi is scheduled to reach Karnataka after his visit to Ayodhya. We are literally groping in the dark from where he is going to contest from. Only Rahul can hint of he will contest from here or not. However, he has so far not taken a decision yet,” the AICC secretary said.
There is a debate going on in the Congress camp as to why there was haste in Siddique kicking off his campaigning even before the list was made official. At the same time, there has been a change of stand among a cross section of party workers on Thursday about the way in which Mr Chandy jumped the gun. Until Wednesday, there was a slight hope that Mr Gandhi will contest from Wayanad.