Take the pledge to vote

For a better tommorow#AajSawaroApnaKal
  • I agree to receive emails from News18

  • I promise to vote in this year's elections no matter what the odds are.
  • Please check above checkbox.


Thank you for
taking the pledge

Vote responsibly as each vote counts
and makes a diffrence


Issued in public interest by HDFC Life. HDFC Life Insurance Company Limited (Formerly HDFC Standard Life Insurance Company Limited) (“HDFC Life”). CIN: L65110MH2000PLC128245, IRDAI Reg. No. 101 . The name/letters "HDFC" in the name/logo of the company belongs to Housing Development Finance Corporation Limited ("HDFC Limited") and is used by HDFC Life under an agreement entered into with HDFC Limited. ARN EU/04/19/13618
LIVE TV DownloadNews18 App
News18 English

EXIT Poll Results

Detailed Exit Poll Results
News18 » Politics
2-min read

'Collective Leadership' of Congress Decided I Should Not Contest From Varanasi, Says Priyanka Gandhi

Earlier, Priyanka Gandhi had said that the decision to field her from Varanasi lay with Congress president Rahul Gandhi.


Updated:April 28, 2019, 12:51 PM IST
'Collective Leadership' of Congress Decided I Should Not Contest From Varanasi, Says Priyanka Gandhi
File photo of Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra. (Image: PTI)

Breaking her silence on not contesting the Lok Sabha election from Varanasi, Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi said the decision to not field her against Prime Minister Narendra Modi was a “collective one” taken by the party leadership.

Gandhi, who is handling the Congress campaign in east Uttar Pradesh, hinted that these responsibilities kept her from entering the poll fray herself. "I have a big responsibility here, many candidates wanted me to campaign for them and I didn’t want to disappoint them," she told News18 India in an exclusive interview.

Her statement that it was a collective decision, however, goes against what party leader Sam Pitroda said about it. He had said that the decision was taken by Gandhi herself.

“It [not contesting from Varanasi] was Priyanka ji’s decision, she has other responsibilities. She thought rather than concentrating on one seat she should focus on the job she has at hand. So, that decision was her and she decided it,” he had told reporters two days ago at a press conference.

The party's decision to field Ajay Rai against PM Modi from Varanasi constituency had led to much disappointment, with many also claiming that the constant speculation, spurred on by the Congress party itself, had backfired.

Earlier, Priyanka Gandhi had said that the decision to field her from Varanasi lay with the party and Congress president Rahul Gandhi.

Gandhi said that as per estimates after three phases of polling, the BJP is far behind. “They will be in a big loss,” she said. “The Congress will be in the lead.”

The Congress leader also dismissed claims that she had, on several occasions, hoped that her brother, Rahul Gandhi, would be elected as Prime Minister after the elections.

“I have never said this. Yes, I want my brother to be happy and successful, and I wish that he succeeds in whatever he does,” she said. “Neither he nor I have any desire for a post.”

Taking a jibe at PM Modi’s “candid and “non-political” interview with actor Akshay Kumar recently, she said it was “strange” that the PM was discussing this when the country was gripped by several issues of more importance.

Gandhi said she had seen “parts” of the interview, which was telecast on April 24.

“In the interview, I saw the bits about where he spoke about mangoes, how he eats mangoes,” she told News18. “It was very strange – when youth in the country are unemployed, farmers are harassed, women are facing several problems, we are discussing how to eat mangoes.”

Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox - subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow News18.com on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Telegram, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what's happening in the world around you – in real time.

Read full article
Next Story
Next Story

Also Watch


Live TV

Countdown To Elections Results
To Assembly Elections 2018 Results