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29 February 2024

India's Rahul Gandhi not obsessed with PM role


Rahul Gandhi, the scion of India's famous Nehru-Gandhi dynasty, on Monday said he was not obsessed with becoming prime minister.

Gandhi, 41, is widely viewed as a prime minister-in-waiting, but has so far avoided roles in the cabinet, preferring instead to focus on building up a youth movement for the ruling Congress party.

He has taken centre-stage in campaigning for the party ahead of the crucial elections in his home state Uttar Pradesh, which begins voting in multi-stage poll on Wednesday.

"All the political leaders in India, all the top ones, have one obsession -- prime ministership. This is not the obsession of Rahul Gandhi," he said at a press conference in Varanasi, about 280 kilometres (175 miles) from state capital Lucknow.

"I have another obsession. I want to correct the way we have been working in this state. I believe it is a monumental crime not to hear the voice of the people."

Gandhi's reply came when asked to comment on his sister Priyanka's remarks during an election rally that he was not focused on becoming the prime minister.

"You people always try to analyse the politics of Rahul Gandhi in terms of whether he should become the Congress president or prime minister," she told reporters in Rai Bareilly town of Uttar Pradesh on Sunday.

"But Rahul Gandhi does not do so. Same is with our family. We are bothered only about the work to be done."

Rahul said he would continue to work for the people of Uttar Pradesh irrespective of which party comes to power in the state.

"I have no power, but the thing I have is some people in this country believe in me. Even if one percent of Uttar Pradesh believes in me, I will be happy," he said.