- There is no question of me contesting from Rae Bareli: Priyanka Vadra
- Rae Bareli constituency represented by Sonia Gandhi since 2004
- Sonia Gandhi yesterday said "My role now is to retire"
She also ruled out a bigger role for herself in the party, stressing that her mother Sonia Gandhi would contest the 2019 national election from her constituency Rae Bareli in Uttar Pradesh.
"There is no question of me contesting from Rae Bareli, my mother will be contesting from there," Ms Vadra, 45, said, responding to media reports that she would debut in politics by contesting the 2019 polls from the constituency her mother has represented since 2004.
On Rahul Gandhi, she said: "He has a tough road ahead and I think he is man for it and he is brave enough."
Yesterday, Sonia Gandhi stumped party leaders and triggered questions about her future in politics as she told NDTV: "My role now is to retire."
Congress leaders hastily clarified that Sonia Gandhi was not retiring from politics, even if she was stepping down as party chief. After handing the baton to her son, she gave an emotional farewell speech in which she also described her own political journey.
Ms Vadra said: "It's a proud moment for me to see her...I have been part of her 20-year journey. I saw how she began... the difficulties she faced. I think she is one of the bravest women I have known."
She has managed her mother's constituency for several years and has also campaigned extensively during polls but has confined herself to Rae Bareli and neighbouring Amethi, her brother's constituency.
Sonia Gandhi has been unwell for the past few years and had vastly reduced her public role, letting her son and number two take the forefront in election campaigns and also party meetings.
Her comment on retiring revived talk about a more active political presence for daughter Priyanka, who bears a strong resemblance to her grandmother and former prime minister Indira Gandhi.
Telegraphing that she intended to stay out of the spotlight in the Congress, Ms Vadra today sat in the audience with husband Robert Vadra, as her brother became party chief.