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Becoming Prime Minister not my priority: Sonia

NEW DELHI, FEB. 22. The Congress president, Sonia Gandhi, today said becoming Prime Minister was not a priority for her and accused the Bharatiya Janata Party of raking up the issue of her foreign origin as the party-led Government at the Centre had ``totally failed."

"The NDA's obsession with the foreign origin could boomerang on them. "They have failed to have any other issue and picked up on this... It may work adversely against them," she said. ``For me, that is not a priority. Let us see when the time comes,'' she said in an interview to the NDTV when asked why the Congress was not coming forward on the issue of leadership of the anti-BJP alliance. To a query whether she felt that her being born in Italy was a liability, she said it might work adversely with some voters but ``I have never felt that I am a foreigner. I am an Indian absolutely.''

``Wherever I go, especially in rural areas, in the midst of women and less fortunate people, I never feel that I am a foreigner. They never look at me as a foreigner because I am an Indian,'' Ms. Gandhi said.

``In fact, I feel like a foreigner when I go abroad,'' she said. ``I don't resent when they talk about my foreign origin. It makes me laugh. Why should I resent when I completely feel like an Indian.''

Ms. Gandhi continued to maintain a veil of secrecy whether and when her children — Rahul and Priyanka — would join the politics. ``It is up to them to decide.''

Ms. Gandhi said the former Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi, did consider the declaration of Emergency in 1977 a ``big mistake." ``Well my mother-in-law did consider the declaration of Emergency in 1977 as a big mistake. The very fact that she declared elections means that she had to rethink,'' she said.

PTI, UNI

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