Politics

Gujarat polls: Congress dissenter Shehzad Poonawalla to start anti-Rahul campaign

08 Dec 2017 | By Krunali Shah
Gujarat polls: Shehzad Poonawala versus Rahul Gandhi

As BJP aims to win 150 seats in the upcoming Gujarat polls, they seem to be getting help from unknown quarters. Interestingly, the latest to join the BJP, albeit not openly, is Congressman and Rahul Gandhi's critic, Shehzad Poonawalla.

Shehzad recently launched a no holds barred attack on Congress's dynastic politics. He called Congress presidential elections a "sham," and openly challenged Rahul's elevation.

In context: Gujarat polls: Shehzad Poonawala versus Rahul Gandhi

08 Dec 2017Gujarat polls: Congress dissenter Shehzad Poonawalla to start anti-Rahul campaign

AboutWho is Shehzad Poonawalla?

Pune's Shehzad Poonawalla is Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee secretary. He is a lawyer and civil rights activist.

An MIT School of Government graduate, Shehzad has been politically active since age 16. He served as National Students Union of India's vice-president.

As an activist, he has taken up issues of student welfare at Banaras Hindu University and Jawaharlal Nehru University.

Rahul's coronation will be observed as "Black day"

Black dayRahul's coronation will be observed as "Black day"

Shehzad declared that "Rahul will be the first illegal and unconstitutional president in Congress history. Therefore, his elevation will be observed as a Black Day."

He claimed that several Congress supporters will change their social media display-pictures to black. Further, he said "My supporters will protest across India wearing black clothes."

Shehzad is also planning to challenge Rahul's elevation as Congress president in court.

GujaratWhat are Shehzad's plans in Gujarat?

In Gujarat, Shehzad hopes to upset Congress's electoral chances as Patidars are doing for BJP. Shehzad said "On December 8, I shall protest the Aurangzeb of Congress in Rajkot."

He also plans to hold a press conference on "save the real Congress and remove dynasticism."

Further, he claimed Congress's internal emergency needs to begin from Gujarat, which "first challenged Indira Gandhi's Emergency of 1975."

AmethiShehzad to spoil Rahul's Amethi plans in 2019 polls

Interestingly, Shehzad doesn't plan to stop at Gujarat. He claims that he will adopt the same strategy in the Gandhi family bastion Amethi during the 2019 LS elections. But, he won't contest against Rahul.

Shehzad asserted "As I shall depose the Aurangzeb of Congress from Amethi, Congress activists will displace him from Akbar Road in Delhi."

DisownedMeanwhile, Shehzad's brother Tehseen disowns him

Meanwhile, Shehzad's brother Tehseen, also a Congress leader, is married to Robert Vadra's cousin Monika.

After Shehzad's outburst, Tehseen said his family was "no longer associated with Shehzad."

He said if Shehzad had any disagreements, he should have raised them at a Congress forum, instead of publicly maligning the party.

He added that his family was "completely" with Rahul Gandhi.