Rahul Gandhi sharing ice cream with a young boy in Madhya Pradesh
Rahul Gandhi sharing ice cream with a young boy in Madhya Pradesh

Rahul Gandhi ups his campaigning style, targets youth

By Shreya Sinha (ANI) | Updated: Oct 30, 2018 18:31 IST

New Delhi [India], Oct 30 (ANI): Upping the campaigning game ahead of the crucial state assembly elections, Congress president Rahul Gandhi has taken to the style of the 'aam-aadmi' (common man) to draw the attention of voters. From visiting restaurants to sharing ice-cream with children, Rahul Gandhi is grabbing eyeballs with his candidness.
Even though this seems to be a refreshing break from the usual fever pitch campaigning, mud-slinging ahead of elections, it does not come as a surprise if one has been following the Congress president's campaigning tactics in the past few elections. From dawning jeans and T-shirts to frequenting ice cream parlours, the Gandhi scion left no stones unturned to make his presence stronger among the youth.
Wearing a black T-shirt, Gandhi was recently spotted sharing his ice cream with children in the election-bound state of Madhya Pradesh, going for polls on November 28. The candid video was shared by the Congress on its official Twitter handle. This could also be seen ahead of the Karnataka elections that took place in May where Gandhi was seen relishing ice creams at an ice cream parlour in Bengaluru.
The endeavour to connect with the youth, if successful, is expected to substantially increase the vote base. Focused on the target, the Congress has also upped its game on social media, from meme-making to actively countering politicians. The party's aggressive social media campaigning has also been a talking point since the Karnataka polls.
The videos containing personal touch with the 'aam-aadmi' showing Gandhi in a different light from the regular pyjama-kurta adorned politician, gained great traction on social media -- Twitter, Facebook and now Instagram. The Congress seems to have realised the strength of social media and its connection with the youth, evident in the party's Instagram handle which shares Rahul Gandhi's photographs from his visits along with candid videos.
 Apart from wooing the youth, the Gandhi scion is often spotted embracing farmers, or the common man from extreme interiors. He could often be seen visiting their homes and cosying up to them, an attempt to definitely woo voters from the grassroots. This, however, is a trend which was also adopted by other political parties when the likes of Bharatiya Janata Party president Amit Shah, Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath along a host of other top-ranked ministers were often seen having meals in the households of the backward castes.
The Congress, however, did not risk overlooking the religion aspect to seek votes as much as they slammed the BJP for attempting to enhance its support base on religious plank. From numerous temple visits to claiming himself as a 'Janeu Dhari' Hindu, Rahul Gandhi has touched upon all aspects of the pre-poll campaigning.
The Gandhi scion also gained attention when he recently met women journalists in Delhi and took all their questions, which the Congress painted as a sharp contrast to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who has been criticised by the Opposition for never holding press conferences. Rahul Gandhi also met a bunch of journalists in the poll-bound state of Madhya Pradesh.
From taking to the streets to protest, recently against the developments in the Central Bureau of Investigation, to attending conclaves and various interactions, conducting road shows, rallies and campaigns, to adding an additional edge by breaking away from the convention, the Congress has definitely restrategised its campaigning tactics, with more aggression.   (ANI)