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Opinion

Can Priyanka Walk The Talk, Emulate ‘Ladki hoon, Lad Sakti Hoon’?

Ladki hoon, lad sakti hoon(I am a girl, I can fight) PRIYANKA Gandhi Vadra coined the slogan to cultivate a separate constituency of women voters for the upcoming Uttar Pradesh Assembly Elections. Keeping true to the spirit of the tagline, she announced 50 women in her party’s first list of candidates. She added 16 more… Continue reading Can Priyanka Walk The Talk, Emulate ‘Ladki hoon, Lad Sakti Hoon’?

Congress’ leader Priyanka Gandhi.

Ladki hoon, lad sakti hoon
(I am a girl, I can fight)

PRIYANKA Gandhi Vadra coined the slogan to cultivate a separate constituency of women voters for the upcoming Uttar Pradesh Assembly Elections. Keeping true to the spirit of the tagline, she announced 50 women in her party’s first list of candidates. She added 16 more a few days later, taking the total number to 66 women out of the 166 candidates announced by the Congress in the first two lists.

And on the day, Congress released its youth-focused manifesto, she dropped a bomb. She hinted she, too, was ready for the Big Fight, that is to be the face of the party for the chief ministerial post in Uttar Pradesh elections.

Only to deny it hours later – that she was “exaggerating” and was being “tongue-in-cheek” about it. But not quick enough to send the media into a tailspin. The shock-announcement was hailed as a welcome sign and how it would give the hobbling party a leg up and a fighting chance in the crucial upcoming polls in the state.

Now that she has done a volte-face, to the dismay of many, it begs a question. Can Priyanka emulate her own slogan, ‘Ladki hoon, lad sakti hoon’ (I am a girl, I can fight)?

READ MORE: Women Representation In 5 States Markedly Low; A Look At The Numbers

Unlike Priyanka, who officially entered active politics only on January 23, 2019, her elder brother Rahul Gandhi has been a Lok Sabha MP since 2004 but he has so far refused to project himself as the official party candidate for any political post.

While Priyanka’s press conference, following the release of her party’s youth manifesto called Bharti Vidhan, did generate a lot of interest when she implied that she could be the CM candidate as only her face was visible in UP, Rahul had skirted the subject before the 2012 Uttar Pradesh election.

READ ALSO: Priyanka As Congress CM Face In Direct Fight With Yogi Adityanath, Akhilesh Yadav

When asked if he would want to be CM face in UP, Rahul had stated that ideally, he should camp there (in the state) and then declare himself (as the CM candidate), but that was a decision to be taken by the party “bosses”.

The Congress faces an uphill task in Uttar Pradesh, once its bastion, but many party leaders contend that Priyanka evokes the same enthusiasm as her late grandmother Indira Gandhi used to among the party workers.

New Delhi: Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra speaks at the launch of Youth Manifesto of UPCC, at AICC in New Delhi, on Jan, 21, 2022. (PTI Photo/Arun Sharma)

They point to her resemblance with Indira Gandhi and argue that she also exudes similar mannerism and oratory skills. Her rallies have seen good participation of women and girls, which the Congress under her guidance in UP believes can be a separate vote bank irrespective of caste and religion.

Facing two formidable rivals in the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Samajwadi Party (BJP), Priyanka is banking on the women voters along with the youth. She has so far kept her promise of providing 40 per cent tickets to women candidates.

With the Bharti Vidhan, Priyanka is trying to address the young voters claiming that Uttar Pradesh under the Yogi Adityanath government has failed to create enough jobs for them.

Her grandmother had once famously said, “hume yeh nahi bhulna chahiye ki Bharat mein takat ki prateek ke mahila hai – shakti ki devi (We should not forget that the symbol of power in India is a woman – Goddess Shakti)”, and now Priyanka too is banking on women power to see her dreams of making Congress a formidable power in UP once again.

ALSO READ: Priyanka As Congress CM Face In Direct Fight With Yogi Adityanath, Akhilesh Yadav