New Delhi: Priyanka Gandhi, the Congress general secretary for eastern Uttar Pradesh, sent ripples across the political spectrum on Thursday with her reply to party workers’ request to contest Lok Sabha Elections 2019 from her mother and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi’s parliamentary constituency Rae Bareli. Responding to them, she asked, “Why not Varanasi?”, hinting at the most high-profile contest of the upcoming polls.

Varanasi is Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s constituency from where he will be contesting the general elections this year again. The Congress and the Samajwadi Party (SP) and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) have not declared their candidates from the seat yet. (ALSO READ – BJP’s First List of Candidates For Lok Sabha Elections 2019: PM Narendra Modi to Contest From Varanasi)

Her remark came on Thursday during an interactive meeting with party booth workers, block presidents, gram panchayat and nagar panchayat heads at a guest house in Rae Bareli, about six km from the district headquarters.

Earlier in the day, Priyanka said that she will contest the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections if the party leadership asks her while adding that she has been given the key task of strengthening her party in the state.

“If my party asks me to contest the polls, I will definitely do so. But my personal wish is to work for the party’s organisation as a lot of work needs to be done,” the Congress leader said at a media interaction in Lucknow.

The Congress general secretary in-charge of the state’s eastern districts kicked off second leg of her campaign on Wednesday with a visit to Amethi. She is scheduled to visit Ayodhya on Friday.

Lok Sabha Elections 2019 will be held in seven phases, beginning April 11. Polling in Rae Bareli will be held in phase 5 on May 6 while Varanasi will go to polls on May 19 in the last phase. The counting of votes will be held on May 23.