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This poll will change country's politics: Sonia
Sharat Pradhan in Rae Bareilly |
May 04, 2006 20:09 IST
Clearly enthused by the overwhelming turnout at her rallies, Congress president Sonia Gandhi looked more assertive on the second day of her campaign in Rae Bareilly from where she is seeking re-election.
"This by-election is not like just any other election; this poll will settle certain vital issues that will determine the future of the country's politics," Sonia told surging crowds at both the major rallies she addressed in different assembly segments of the parliamentary constituency.
While briefly repeating the circumstances that prompted her to resign, she said, "Those who were raising the accusing finger at me, were now trying to save each other's skin and skirt the main issue."
And in the same vein, she went on to assert, "Double standards will not do any more -- be it politics or real life."
The poll on May 8 follows her own resignation following the controversies over her holding an office of profit in violation of Constitutional provisions.
While she did not elaborate on her crisp remark that was repeated at both the rallies, it has surely set the ball rolling for political pundits to draw their own speculations and interpretations.
Some see it as a reflection of what she has in mind about amendments in the definition of office of profit, while others see the possibility of a campaign by the Congress party to compel all others accused of holding office of profit to follow course and seek fresh election.
In hushed tones, her supporters in Rae Bareilly even went to the extent of interpreting it as her decision to play a more direct and assertive role in the governance of the nation. The crowds hailed her as their 'hero' and did not mind waiting for hours under the scorching 42 degree Sun to listen to her with rapt attention.
The crowds far surpassed the attendance at the rallies of her rivals -- including those addressed by chief minister and Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav or Bhartiya Janata Party chief Rajnath Singh.
Echoing her assertions about 'not leaving the battleground,' she made it loud and clear at each of the public rallies that she was determined to take her political battles to their logical conclusion. She returned to New Delhi later in the evening.