The Congress also fielded Madhusudan Tiwari from Gorakhpur against BJP‘s actor-turned politician Ravi Kishan.
Priyanka had earlier said that she will be happy to contest from Varanasi if asked by her brother and Congress president Rahul Gandhi.
The Congress had fielded Rai against Modi in 2014 as well. He finished third in the contest, after Modi and Aam Aadmi Party’s Arvind Kejriwal.
Last week, in response to a question on whether he planned to field his sister against PM Modi, party chief Rahul Gandhi had said, “I will leave you in suspense. Suspense is not always a bad thing.”
Priyanka herself triggered speculation that she might contest from the temple town when, in response to a question last month if she will make her electoral debut from her mother Sonia’s constituency Rae Bareli, she quipped “why not Varanasi?”
Taking a dig at Priyanka after the announcement, BJP leader GVL Narasimha Rao claimed she “chickened out” of the contest after toying with the idea.
Like Brother, Like Sister. @RahulGandhi runs away to a faraway constituency and sister @priyankagandhi Vadra chicke… https://t.co/esdO7830Ws
— Chowkidar GVL Narasimha Rao (@GVLNRAO) 1556177272000
“Like Brother, Like Sister. @RahulGandhi runs away to a faraway constituency and sister @priyankagandhi Vadra chickens out of a contest after toying with the idea. Naamdars have already conceded big defeat to the Kaamdar @narendramodi Ji. Varanasi reverberating #KashiBoleNaMoNaMo,” Rao said on Twitter.
Varanasi will vote in the last phase of Lok Sabha elections on May 19. Making sense of 2019 #ElectionswithtimesView Full Coverage