Over the next few years, Rahul remained on the sidelines of political life but grew increasingly visible, prompting speculation that he would soon take on an official role in the Congress. In January 2004, he visited his father's former constituency of Amethi and said, in typically oblique fashion, "I am not averse to politics. I have not decided when I will enter politics and indeed, if I ever will."
Just two months later, in March 2004, he announced his intention to contest the May elections, standing from Amethi. In this file photo dated March 29, 2004, Rahul Gandhi speaks to an elderly woman in Jamon village near Amethi. (Photo: AFP)