The Utter Pradesh elections are always important. It is the most populous state and sends the maximum number of Members of Parliament to the Lok Sabha. In fact it is the power base of India and most Prime Ministers of India have come from UP.
Rahul Gandhi has realized the importance of UP and has campaigned hard this winter in UP. He has toured every nook and corner of the state to enthuse the voters to vote for the Congress party. In the last Lok Sabha elections the Congress had won about 20 seats and in case it is translated to assembly constituencies the Congress should win about 100 seats. In case Rahul can swing even 2% of the voters further the Congress can bag about 150 seats.
What I have written in the earlier paragraph is what the popular perception is, but this time around the results may not happen that way. All the exit polls are showing a SP under Mulayam Singh as the largest party and the Congress is just given about 555-50 seats. This is a far cry from what Rahul would have expected to win.
In case the Congress fails in UP then there will be a serious question mark about his capability as a national leader. Being a third rung party in UP is not conducive to leading a nation. It also means the Rahul magic has not worked. This could be a disturbing thought for the Congress leadership. One can just wait for another day to know the future of Rahul Gandhi. In case Congress does well, then one can be reasonably sure that Rahul is on the path to leading India.