UP Polls: Like Grandmother, Like Granddaughter?


It has been a ritual to pass on the reins of an establishment, either business or politically oriented, to the sons of the family. That’s how an establishment secures its survival and prolongs the decay that threatens to shatters it; a son is what is required. In everyday lives, we would ignore our daughters for something as massive as securing and solidifying the family name further, because the daughter has and will always be a paraya dhan, waiting to hop from one family to another.

This ritual, which indeed is highly sexist and patriarchal in nature, turned the tables for the once-empowered Congress. Naming Rahul Gandhi as the future of the Party, and giving him roles that he couldn’t bring justice to, turned to out to be a risk that led to the almost-demise situation for Congress. Rahul Gandhi wasn’t as favored as the other members of the Gandhi clan were, and this resulted in a massive blow that made Congress lose all of its reins over its established power centres, of course, barring Amethi or Rae Barelli. A national party was reduced to a position of a mere regional party.

However, there seems a tiny bit of hope for the Party, or for at least stepping up on the path leading to gain the lost respect and to dignify its name once again. The hope is nothing but the daughter of the family- Priyanka Gandhi. Long denied the role with which she could have retained the power play of the Party, Priyanka is all set to contest UP polls, the next year.

Unleashing the Star Campaigner in the upcoming UP election is a huge gamble, a gamble they can’t risk avoiding or losing.

Amongst great speculation and debates, the Gandhi daughter, who bears an uncanny resemblance to the personality of her grandmother and the former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in the eyes of the people, is finally foraying in the battle to claim the throne of UP. Even though, she possesses a natural flair for the job, it won’t be an easy ride for her or the crumbling Party. The Party definitely needs the presence of a fresh yet a strong face, which culminates into the personality of Priyanka Gandhi, and not Rahul Gandhi.


Holding a base in a state that has denied them of it since 1989, won’t be an easy task. Congress has to immerse itself in great strategic planning and a frivolous campaign to beat the odds, and to unearth the power of leaders like Mayawati, Mulayam and Akhilesh Yadav, so as to attain the supremacy and lost glory.

With her finally stepping out of Amethi and Rae Barelli, does the novice has it in her to battle it out with the biggies? Will the gamble be a fruitful one, or would further drag Congress into an abyss? Will the stigma of both the Gandhi and Vadra name hamper her chances? Is she going to be plagued by the indecisiveness, infights and the corruption which is now rooted in the Party?

The speculations are rife, and so is the role of Priyanka Gandhi. It won’t be surprising to see the daughter take on bigger responsibilities, which might assimilate into her being the face of the Party, especially after her brother has failed to do so. It’s known, that whatever might happen, the power has to be regulated within the family, and since the Prince of the Party has failed to attain it, maybe Priyanka can finally give justice to it.

Her campaign in the UP polls is awaited and dreaded with equal measure. The polls would be crucial in deciding the fate of the Congress in the 2019 national elections. The party might win or lose with the trump card they have decided to unleash. With the aid of the Party strategist Prashant Kishor, it remains to be seen whether Congress can finally loosen the shackles bringing forth its end.

Whatever might happen from these polls, it is undeniable that the power will remain in the family. Either the Party will gain its strength or dig their grave a bit deeper; it will always be associated with the Gandhi clan. After all, it’s all about the family and for it, isn’t it?

Yugansha Malhotra

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