Ready to be PM if Cong emerges victorious in 2019 LS polls: Rahul Gandhi

Bengaluru: Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday declared that he is ready to become the Prime Minister of India if Congress returns to power and emerges as the “biggest” party in the 2019 Lok Sabha with full majority.

At a gathering of prominent citizens in Bengaluru in the run-up to the May 12 elections in Karnataka, Rahul Gandhi was asked whether he could become Prime Minister if the Congress emerged as the single largest party.

"Well, it depends….it depends on how well the Congress does in the election….I mean if it emerges as the biggest party, yes," the Congress president responded with a smile.

This is not the first such declaration from Rahul Gandhi, seen for years as a reluctant politician even though he contested three parliamentary elections and was his mother Sonia Gandhi's deputy in the party for five years.

In September 2017, speaking to students at UC Berkeley, the 47-year-old had said he was "absolutely ready" to be the party's prime ministerial candidate for the 2019 general elections.

At a function in Karnataka on Tuesday, where he launched the “Samruddha Bharat Foundation”, Rahul Gandhi added that he is "pretty confident" that Narendra Modi would not be the next Prime Minister of the country.

If the Congress acts as a "platform" (with other parties in a coalition), the BJP does not stand a chance of winning the elections, the Congress chief said.

"It is highly unlikely that BJP will form the next government, and the second part is that it is close to impossible that Modi will be the next prime minister," Rahul Gandhi said.

The Congress president said the opposition unity would not allow the BJP to remain in power.

Rahul Gandhi asserted that the Congress would win the Assembly polls in Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan.

"Samruddha Bharat Foundation" is a platform to propagate liberal, secular and republican values across the country. Its trustees include veteran film director Shyam Benegal and noted Supreme Court advocate KTS Tulsi.

(With inputs from PTI)

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