Kanhaiya meets Rahul; Congress-entry on the cards?

Kanhaiya Kumar fought the 2019 Lok Sabha elections from the Begusarai constituency of Bihar against BJP’s Giriraj Singh

Kanhaiya Kumar, the former President of the Jawaharlal Nehru University Students Union has been a constant in the news since he was booked for sedition with his JNUSU aides, Umar Khalid and Shehla Rashid. Shortly after the incident, Kumar joined mainstream politics through the Communist Party of India.

Political Journey So Far

After joining mainstream politics, Kanhaiya gained fame, backed by his oratory skills. His constant appearance on news debates and his famous stage-sharing with the BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra for a debate, ensured that he stayed in the public eye.

A staunch critique of the Narendra Modi-led BJP government, Kumar contested the 2019 Lok Sabha elections from the Begusarai constituency of Bihar. The popularity of Kumar meant that the BJP had to field their veteran politician, Giriraj Singh, against him, even though Begusarai wasn’t Singh’s original contesting field. The popularity of his competitor came about as a frustration for Giriraj Singh, who was forced to contest from a not-so-strong constituency.

However, come election results, Singh triumphed over Kumar by a landslide margin as he opened with a massive lead of over 90,000 votes. This was said to be the result of caste politics in the state.

Kanhaiya Kumar Meets Rahul Gandhi

In a fresh development, Kanhaiya Kumar recently met Congress’s Rahul Gandhi. Experts are predicting that this meeting was to lay the groundwork for the CPI leader to join the Indian National Congress. Interestingly, Jignesh Mevani, is also believed to be in touch with the Indian National Congress and may hop over to the party.

Notably, the Indian National Congress has been experiencing desertion from some of its veterans as well as young politicians. Among the young brigade who jumped ship are Jyotiraditya Scindia, Sushmita Dev, Jitin Prasada and Priyanka Chaturvedi.

With Kumar and Mevani likely to join the INC Camp, they are expected to fill these shoes and boost the image of the party.

Sources say that Kumar had been feeling suffocated in the CPI camp for some time now, and that could be the reason he met Gandhi on Tuesday. When the General Secretary of the CPI was asked to comment on this, he said: “I can only say that he was present at the national executive meeting of our party earlier this month. He spoke and participated in the deliberations,”.

On the other hand, Jignesh Mevani received a good bit of help from Congress in the last Assembly elections, as the party did not field a candidate against him from the Vadgam seat in Banaskantha district of northern Gujarat.

In case Kanhaiya Kumar joins the Congress, it might prove helpful to the party in respect of the UP Assembly elections. With SP and BSP making it clear that they will not be tying up with the Congress, the party is set to join the fray alone. However, with Kanhaiya’s oratory brilliance on their side, he might prove to be an asset for them during the campaigning.

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