04 April 2019
Wayanad (Kerala): Thousands gave a rousing welcome to Congress President Rahul Gandhi who filed his Lok Sabha nomination from Wayanad in Kerala on Thursday morning.
Arriving on a helicopter from Kozhikode, Rahul Gandhi and his sister Priyanka Gandhi drove to the Wayanad Collector's office some 500 meters away, all the time cheered by people packing both sides of the road.
Amid tight security, only a few persons were allowed to go in with them.
The Gandhis later boarded an open jeep for a road show in Wayanad, one of the economically backward regions of Kerala, accompanied by Congress General Secretary Oommen Chandy.
Police personnel found it tough to handle the surging crowds. The situation became more difficult whenever Rahul Gandhi shook hands with supporters.
Rahul Gandhi will be contesting from both Amethi in Uttar Pradesh, his traditional Lok Sabha constituency, as well as Wayanad.
Kerala goes to the polls on April 23 to elect 20 MPs.
At one time, there were heated exchanges between Congress leaders and Special Protection Group (SPG) officials after the latter insisted that the proposed road show might not happen due to security concerns.
But in the end the Congress leadership won the tussle.
The crowds were delirious.
"I have seen Indira Gandhi when she came to Kozhikode many years back. Now I am excited that I have seen her grandchildren. I am very happy," beamed a 78-year-old Muslim woman.
Another group of Congress activists shouted: "Rahul will win with a massive margin never seen in Kerala."