Priyanka Gandhi Vadra admitted today that there was a real possibility of election strategist Prashant Kishor joining the Congress last year but “it did not work out.”
The Congress leader told NDTV that the partnership fell through over “multiple” reasons.
“I think it did not work out for multiple reasons. Some on his part, some on our part. I wouldn’t want to get into the details of that. Broadly there was an inability to agree on certain issues, which sort of impeded the discussion from moving froward,” Priyanka Gandhi said.
She emphatically denied it had anything to do with reluctance to bring an outsider into the Congress.
“Had there been that reluctance, there wouldn’t have been so many discussions,” she countered.
The possibility of Prashant Kishor – aka “PK” – joining the Congress was real, admitted Priyanka Gandhi. “At some point yes. It did not work out.”
Prashant Kishor held several rounds of discussions with all three Gandhis – Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi – last year and images of the strategist going to Rahul Gandhi’s home sparked wild speculation. His entry into the Congress was said to be all but done.
Reports of a breakdown in negotiations emerged alongside a series of pungent attacks by Prashant Kishor, who publicly said it was not the “divine right of any individual” to lead the Congress, “especially when the party has lost more than 90 per cent of the elections in the last 10 years.”
PK has made it clear that he believes the Congress does have a role to play in the opposition ahead of the 2024 national election, but not under the current leadership.
His collaboration with the Congress for the 2017 UP polls had flopped miserably; the BJP swept to power, decimating the Akhilesh Yadav-Congress alliance. It was not all bad – the Congress did win in Punjab, where Amarinder Singh had PK’s help.