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Sonia Gandhi: Power behind the throne

<p>Chief of ruling Congress party Sonia Gandhi waves to her supporters during an election campaign rally ahead of state assembly elections at Rajkot, in Gujarat October 3, 2012. REUTERS/Amit Dave</p>

Chief of ruling Congress party Sonia Gandhi waves to her supporters during an election campaign rally ahead of state assembly elections at Rajkot, in Gujarat October 3, 2012. REUTERS/Amit Dave

Chief of ruling Congress party Sonia Gandhi waves to her supporters during an election campaign rally ahead of state assembly elections at Rajkot, in Gujarat October 3, 2012. REUTERS/Amit Dave

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<p>Chief of ruling Congress party Sonia Gandhi adjusts her saree during an election campaign rally ahead of state assembly elections at Rajkot, inujarat October 3, 2012. REUTERS/Amit Dave</p>

Chief of ruling Congress party Sonia Gandhi adjusts her saree during an election campaign rally ahead of state assembly elections at Rajkot, inujarat October 3, 2012. REUTERS/Amit Dave

Chief of ruling Congress party Sonia Gandhi adjusts her saree during an election campaign rally ahead of state assembly elections at Rajkot, inujarat October 3, 2012. REUTERS/Amit Dave

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<p>Ruling Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi (4th L) and Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar (2nd L), surrounded by their bodyguards, leave the historic Red Fort after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's speech during the Independence Day celebrations in Delhi August 15, 2012. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi </p>

Ruling Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi (4th L) and Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar (2nd L), surrounded by their bodyguards, leave the historic Red Fort after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's speech during the Independence Day celebrations in Delhi...more

Ruling Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi (4th L) and Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar (2nd L), surrounded by their bodyguards, leave the historic Red Fort after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's speech during the Independence Day celebrations in Delhi August 15, 2012. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

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<p>Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi walks at her husband Rajiv Gandhi's memorial on the 68th birth anniversary of the former Prime Minister, in New Delhi August 20, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur </p>

Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi walks at her husband Rajiv Gandhi's memorial on the 68th birth anniversary of the former Prime Minister, in New Delhi August 20, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur

Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi walks at her husband Rajiv Gandhi's memorial on the 68th birth anniversary of the former Prime Minister, in New Delhi August 20, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur

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<p>Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi attends the Congress Working Committee (CWC) meeting in New Delhi September 25, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur </p>

Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi attends the Congress Working Committee (CWC) meeting in New Delhi September 25, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur

Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi attends the Congress Working Committee (CWC) meeting in New Delhi September 25, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur

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<p>Ruling Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi waits for the start of the "At-Home Ceremony" to mark Independence Day at Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi August 15, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur </p>

Ruling Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi waits for the start of the "At-Home Ceremony" to mark Independence Day at Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi August 15, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur

Ruling Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi waits for the start of the "At-Home Ceremony" to mark Independence Day at Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi August 15, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur

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<p>Sonia Gandhi (2nd R) arrives at the Rashtrapati Bhavan to attend a ceremony for the newly elected President Pranab Mukherjee in New Delhi July 25, 2012.  REUTERS/Adnan Abidi </p>

Sonia Gandhi (2nd R) arrives at the Rashtrapati Bhavan to attend a ceremony for the newly elected President Pranab Mukherjee in New Delhi July 25, 2012. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

Sonia Gandhi (2nd R) arrives at the Rashtrapati Bhavan to attend a ceremony for the newly elected President Pranab Mukherjee in New Delhi July 25, 2012. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

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<p>Prime Minister Manmohan Singh (C), Sonia Gandhi (R) and then Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee attend the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) meeting in New Delhi June 15, 2012.  REUTERS/B Mathur </p>

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh (C), Sonia Gandhi (R) and then Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee attend the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) meeting in New Delhi June 15, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh (C), Sonia Gandhi (R) and then Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee attend the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) meeting in New Delhi June 15, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur

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<p>Sonia Gandhi holds a Jaapi, a traditional bamboo sun shade, presented to her by Assam's chief minister Tarun Gogoi at Guwahati in Assam May 26, 2012. REUTERS/Utpal Baruah </p>

Sonia Gandhi holds a Jaapi, a traditional bamboo sun shade, presented to her by Assam's chief minister Tarun Gogoi at Guwahati in Assam May 26, 2012. REUTERS/Utpal Baruah

Sonia Gandhi holds a Jaapi, a traditional bamboo sun shade, presented to her by Assam's chief minister Tarun Gogoi at Guwahati in Assam May 26, 2012. REUTERS/Utpal Baruah

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<p>Chief of India's ruling Congress party Sonia Gandhi (R) pays tribute at her husband Rajiv Gandhi's memorial as her son and Rahul Gandhi watches in New Delhi May 21, 2012.  REUTERS/Adnan Abidi </p>

Chief of India's ruling Congress party Sonia Gandhi (R) pays tribute at her husband Rajiv Gandhi's memorial as her son and Rahul Gandhi watches in New Delhi May 21, 2012. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

Chief of India's ruling Congress party Sonia Gandhi (R) pays tribute at her husband Rajiv Gandhi's memorial as her son and Rahul Gandhi watches in New Delhi May 21, 2012. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

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<p>Chief of ruling Congress party Sonia Gandhi (C), surrounded by her bodyguards, arrives along with the Urban Development Minister Kamal Nath (2nd L) to pay homage at the Mahatma Gandhi memorial, on the 143rd birth anniversary of Gandhi at Rajghat in New Delhi October 2, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur</p>

Chief of ruling Congress party Sonia Gandhi (C), surrounded by her bodyguards, arrives along with the Urban Development Minister Kamal Nath (2nd L) to pay homage at the Mahatma Gandhi memorial, on the 143rd birth anniversary of Gandhi at Rajghat in...more

Chief of ruling Congress party Sonia Gandhi (C), surrounded by her bodyguards, arrives along with the Urban Development Minister Kamal Nath (2nd L) to pay homage at the Mahatma Gandhi memorial, on the 143rd birth anniversary of Gandhi at Rajghat in New Delhi October 2, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur

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<p>Chief of ruling Congress party Sonia Gandhi (L) pays homage at the Mahatma Gandhi memorial, on the 143rd birth anniversary of Gandhi at Rajghat in New Delhi October 2, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur</p>

Chief of ruling Congress party Sonia Gandhi (L) pays homage at the Mahatma Gandhi memorial, on the 143rd birth anniversary of Gandhi at Rajghat in New Delhi October 2, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur

Chief of ruling Congress party Sonia Gandhi (L) pays homage at the Mahatma Gandhi memorial, on the 143rd birth anniversary of Gandhi at Rajghat in New Delhi October 2, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur

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<p>Prime Minister Manmohan Singh (L) and Sonia Gandhi play a folk drum during the silver jubilee celebrations of the Zonal Cultural Centres (ZCC) at Panchkula, Haryana April 13, 2012. REUTERS/Ajay Verma </p>

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh (L) and Sonia Gandhi play a folk drum during the silver jubilee celebrations of the Zonal Cultural Centres (ZCC) at Panchkula, Haryana April 13, 2012. REUTERS/Ajay Verma

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh (L) and Sonia Gandhi play a folk drum during the silver jubilee celebrations of the Zonal Cultural Centres (ZCC) at Panchkula, Haryana April 13, 2012. REUTERS/Ajay Verma

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<p>Sonia Gandhi stands before large portraits of two slain former Prime Ministers, Indira Gandhi (L) and Rajiv Gandhi, as she waves to party workers at a rally on the eve of Congress Foundation Day in Mumbai. December 27, 2003. REUTERS/Sherwin Crasto </p>

Sonia Gandhi stands before large portraits of two slain former Prime Ministers, Indira Gandhi (L) and Rajiv Gandhi, as she waves to party workers at a rally on the eve of Congress Foundation Day in Mumbai. December 27, 2003. REUTERS/Sherwin Crasto more

Sonia Gandhi stands before large portraits of two slain former Prime Ministers, Indira Gandhi (L) and Rajiv Gandhi, as she waves to party workers at a rally on the eve of Congress Foundation Day in Mumbai. December 27, 2003. REUTERS/Sherwin Crasto

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<p>Sonia Gandhi addresses the media after attending a party meeting in New Delhi March 7, 2012.  REUTERS/B Mathur </p>

Sonia Gandhi addresses the media after attending a party meeting in New Delhi March 7, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur

Sonia Gandhi addresses the media after attending a party meeting in New Delhi March 7, 2012. REUTERS/B Mathur

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<p>Sonia Gandhi (C) sits under her portrait presented to her by tribal women during the inauguration ceremony of the "National Convention on Empowerment to Tribal Women" in New Delhi December 16, 2011.  REUTERS/B Mathur </p>

Sonia Gandhi (C) sits under her portrait presented to her by tribal women during the inauguration ceremony of the "National Convention on Empowerment to Tribal Women" in New Delhi December 16, 2011. REUTERS/B Mathur

Sonia Gandhi (C) sits under her portrait presented to her by tribal women during the inauguration ceremony of the "National Convention on Empowerment to Tribal Women" in New Delhi December 16, 2011. REUTERS/B Mathur

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<p>Sonia Gandhi (L) worships artists dressed as Hindu gods Rama and Laxman during the Dussehra festival celebrations in the old quarters of Delhi October 6, 2011. REUTERS/Stringer </p>

Sonia Gandhi (L) worships artists dressed as Hindu gods Rama and Laxman during the Dussehra festival celebrations in the old quarters of Delhi October 6, 2011. REUTERS/Stringer

Sonia Gandhi (L) worships artists dressed as Hindu gods Rama and Laxman during the Dussehra festival celebrations in the old quarters of Delhi October 6, 2011. REUTERS/Stringer

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<p>Sonia Gandhi scatters rose petals at the Mahatma Gandhi memorial, on the 142nd birth anniversary of Gandhi at Rajghat in New Delhi October 2, 2011. REUTERS/B Mathur </p>

Sonia Gandhi scatters rose petals at the Mahatma Gandhi memorial, on the 142nd birth anniversary of Gandhi at Rajghat in New Delhi October 2, 2011. REUTERS/B Mathur

Sonia Gandhi scatters rose petals at the Mahatma Gandhi memorial, on the 142nd birth anniversary of Gandhi at Rajghat in New Delhi October 2, 2011. REUTERS/B Mathur

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<p>Manmohan Singh (L) and Sonia Gandhi gesture to then President Pratibha Patil before the swearing-in ceremony of the reshuffled cabinet at the presidential palace in New Delhi July 12, 2011. REUTERS/B Mathur </p>

Manmohan Singh (L) and Sonia Gandhi gesture to then President Pratibha Patil before the swearing-in ceremony of the reshuffled cabinet at the presidential palace in New Delhi July 12, 2011. REUTERS/B Mathur

Manmohan Singh (L) and Sonia Gandhi gesture to then President Pratibha Patil before the swearing-in ceremony of the reshuffled cabinet at the presidential palace in New Delhi July 12, 2011. REUTERS/B Mathur

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<p>Sonia Gandhi releases a book celebrating 125 years of the party during the 83rd plenary session of Congress party in New Delhi December 19, 2010. REUTERS/Stringer </p>

Sonia Gandhi releases a book celebrating 125 years of the party during the 83rd plenary session of Congress party in New Delhi December 19, 2010. REUTERS/Stringer

Sonia Gandhi releases a book celebrating 125 years of the party during the 83rd plenary session of Congress party in New Delhi December 19, 2010. REUTERS/Stringer

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<p>Sonia Gandhi speaks during the All India Congress Committee (AICC) meeting in New Delhi November 2, 2010. REUTERS/B Mathur </p>

Sonia Gandhi speaks during the All India Congress Committee (AICC) meeting in New Delhi November 2, 2010. REUTERS/B Mathur

Sonia Gandhi speaks during the All India Congress Committee (AICC) meeting in New Delhi November 2, 2010. REUTERS/B Mathur

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<p>Sonia Gandhi (C) celebrates Raksha Bandhan festival with school children at her residence in New Delhi August 24, 2010. REUTERS/Stringer </p>

Sonia Gandhi (C) celebrates Raksha Bandhan festival with school children at her residence in New Delhi August 24, 2010. REUTERS/Stringer

Sonia Gandhi (C) celebrates Raksha Bandhan festival with school children at her residence in New Delhi August 24, 2010. REUTERS/Stringer

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<p>Sonia Gandhi (C) surrounded by her bodyguards, walks at the historic Red Fort during Independence Day celebrations in Delhi August 15, 2010. REUTERS/B Mathur </p>

Sonia Gandhi (C) surrounded by her bodyguards, walks at the historic Red Fort during Independence Day celebrations in Delhi August 15, 2010. REUTERS/B Mathur

Sonia Gandhi (C) surrounded by her bodyguards, walks at the historic Red Fort during Independence Day celebrations in Delhi August 15, 2010. REUTERS/B Mathur

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<p>A supporter of Sonia Gandhi, dressed as a female, wears a tag of Sonia as he attends her birthday celebrations in New Delhi December 9, 2009. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri </p>

A supporter of Sonia Gandhi, dressed as a female, wears a tag of Sonia as he attends her birthday celebrations in New Delhi December 9, 2009. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

A supporter of Sonia Gandhi, dressed as a female, wears a tag of Sonia as he attends her birthday celebrations in New Delhi December 9, 2009. REUTERS/Rupak De Chowdhuri

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<p>Sonia Gandhi speaks besides a portrait of Indira Gandhi during the conferment ceremony of the 22nd Indira Gandhi peace prize at Rashtrapati Bhawan in New Delhi July 25, 2009.  REUTERS/B Mathur </p>

Sonia Gandhi speaks besides a portrait of Indira Gandhi during the conferment ceremony of the 22nd Indira Gandhi peace prize at Rashtrapati Bhawan in New Delhi July 25, 2009. REUTERS/B Mathur

Sonia Gandhi speaks besides a portrait of Indira Gandhi during the conferment ceremony of the 22nd Indira Gandhi peace prize at Rashtrapati Bhawan in New Delhi July 25, 2009. REUTERS/B Mathur

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<p>Sonia Gandhi speaks with the media after attending a thanksgiving ceremony in Rae Bareli in Uttar Pradesh June 11, 2009.  REUTERS/Pawan Kumar </p>

Sonia Gandhi speaks with the media after attending a thanksgiving ceremony in Rae Bareli in Uttar Pradesh June 11, 2009. REUTERS/Pawan Kumar

Sonia Gandhi speaks with the media after attending a thanksgiving ceremony in Rae Bareli in Uttar Pradesh June 11, 2009. REUTERS/Pawan Kumar

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<p>Sonia Gandhi departs in a car after her meeting with former president Pratibha Patil in New Delhi May 20, 2009.  REUTERS/B Mathur </p>

Sonia Gandhi departs in a car after her meeting with former president Pratibha Patil in New Delhi May 20, 2009. REUTERS/B Mathur

Sonia Gandhi departs in a car after her meeting with former president Pratibha Patil in New Delhi May 20, 2009. REUTERS/B Mathur

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<p>Manmohan Singh (2nd L) and Sonia Gandhi (L) address the media after their meeting with the president in New Delhi May 20, 2009.  REUTERS/Adnan Abidi </p>

Manmohan Singh (2nd L) and Sonia Gandhi (L) address the media after their meeting with the president in New Delhi May 20, 2009. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

Manmohan Singh (2nd L) and Sonia Gandhi (L) address the media after their meeting with the president in New Delhi May 20, 2009. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

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<p>A supporter gives a victory sign in front of portrait of Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi  May 16, 2009.  REUTERS/Arko Datta </p>

A supporter gives a victory sign in front of portrait of Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi May 16, 2009. REUTERS/Arko Datta

A supporter gives a victory sign in front of portrait of Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi May 16, 2009. REUTERS/Arko Datta

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<p>Sonia Gandhi waits for Prime Minister Manmohan Singh at her residence in New Delhi May 16, 2009.  REUTERS/Adnan Abidi </p>

Sonia Gandhi waits for Prime Minister Manmohan Singh at her residence in New Delhi May 16, 2009. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

Sonia Gandhi waits for Prime Minister Manmohan Singh at her residence in New Delhi May 16, 2009. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

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<p>Sonia Gandhi arrives to address her supporters during an election campaign rally in New Delhi April 29, 2009.  REUTERS/Adnan Abidi </p>

Sonia Gandhi arrives to address her supporters during an election campaign rally in New Delhi April 29, 2009. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

Sonia Gandhi arrives to address her supporters during an election campaign rally in New Delhi April 29, 2009. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

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<p>A security guard stands next to a cut-out of Sonia Gandhi, during a Gandhi's election rally in Sakoli village, some 95kms from Nagpur city in Maharashtra April 10, 2009. REUTERS/Arko Datta</p>

A security guard stands next to a cut-out of Sonia Gandhi, during a Gandhi's election rally in Sakoli village, some 95kms from Nagpur city in Maharashtra April 10, 2009. REUTERS/Arko Datta

A security guard stands next to a cut-out of Sonia Gandhi, during a Gandhi's election rally in Sakoli village, some 95kms from Nagpur city in Maharashtra April 10, 2009. REUTERS/Arko Datta

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<p>Sonia Gandhi waves to her supporters as she arrives in Rae Bareli in Uttar Pradesh April 6, 2009. REUTERS/Stringer </p>

Sonia Gandhi waves to her supporters as she arrives in Rae Bareli in Uttar Pradesh April 6, 2009. REUTERS/Stringer

Sonia Gandhi waves to her supporters as she arrives in Rae Bareli in Uttar Pradesh April 6, 2009. REUTERS/Stringer

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<p>Sonia Gandhi greets party supporters at her residence in New Delhi July 22, 2008. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi</p>

Sonia Gandhi greets party supporters at her residence in New Delhi July 22, 2008. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

Sonia Gandhi greets party supporters at her residence in New Delhi July 22, 2008. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

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<p>Sonia Gandhi plays Holi at her residence in New Delhi March 22, 2008.  REUTERS/Vijay Mathur </p>

Sonia Gandhi plays Holi at her residence in New Delhi March 22, 2008. REUTERS/Vijay Mathur

Sonia Gandhi plays Holi at her residence in New Delhi March 22, 2008. REUTERS/Vijay Mathur

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<p>Sonia Gandhi walks after inaugurating Kashmir's first Tulip garden in Srinagar March 29, 2008. REUTERS/Danish Ismail </p>

Sonia Gandhi walks after inaugurating Kashmir's first Tulip garden in Srinagar March 29, 2008. REUTERS/Danish Ismail

Sonia Gandhi walks after inaugurating Kashmir's first Tulip garden in Srinagar March 29, 2008. REUTERS/Danish Ismail

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<p>Sonia Gandhi (C) smiles as she poses for a photograph with Kashmiri women at the Sher-i-Kashmir International Convention Complex (SKICC) in Srinagar September 10, 2007. REUTERS/Danish Ismail </p>

Sonia Gandhi (C) smiles as she poses for a photograph with Kashmiri women at the Sher-i-Kashmir International Convention Complex (SKICC) in Srinagar September 10, 2007. REUTERS/Danish Ismail

Sonia Gandhi (C) smiles as she poses for a photograph with Kashmiri women at the Sher-i-Kashmir International Convention Complex (SKICC) in Srinagar September 10, 2007. REUTERS/Danish Ismail

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<p>Sonia Gandhi laughs after her meeting with former President Pratibha Patil (not pictured) in New Delhi July 21, 2007. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi </p>

Sonia Gandhi laughs after her meeting with former President Pratibha Patil (not pictured) in New Delhi July 21, 2007. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

Sonia Gandhi laughs after her meeting with former President Pratibha Patil (not pictured) in New Delhi July 21, 2007. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

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<p>Princess Diana with Sonia Gandhi (L) at her New Delhi residence February 11, 1992. REUTERS/Sunil Malbotra</p>

Princess Diana with Sonia Gandhi (L) at her New Delhi residence February 11, 1992. REUTERS/Sunil Malbotra

Princess Diana with Sonia Gandhi (L) at her New Delhi residence February 11, 1992. REUTERS/Sunil Malbotra

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<p>Sonia Gandhi, speaks near a portrait of Indira Gandhi during the conferment ceremony of the Indira Gandhi peace prize at the Rashtrapati Bhawan in New Delhi November 19, 2006.  REUTERS/B Mathur </p>

Sonia Gandhi, speaks near a portrait of Indira Gandhi during the conferment ceremony of the Indira Gandhi peace prize at the Rashtrapati Bhawan in New Delhi November 19, 2006. REUTERS/B Mathur

Sonia Gandhi, speaks near a portrait of Indira Gandhi during the conferment ceremony of the Indira Gandhi peace prize at the Rashtrapati Bhawan in New Delhi November 19, 2006. REUTERS/B Mathur

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<p>Sonia Gandhi salutes her supporters in front of a poster of herself and her late husband Rajiv at Kadapa, about 420 km (261 miles) from Hyderabad September 27, 2006. REUTERS/Krishnendu Halder</p>

Sonia Gandhi salutes her supporters in front of a poster of herself and her late husband Rajiv at Kadapa, about 420 km (261 miles) from Hyderabad September 27, 2006. REUTERS/Krishnendu Halder

Sonia Gandhi salutes her supporters in front of a poster of herself and her late husband Rajiv at Kadapa, about 420 km (261 miles) from Hyderabad September 27, 2006. REUTERS/Krishnendu Halder

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<p>Sonia Gandhi attends the party's elite Congress Working Committee (CWC) in New Delhi. 17/05/1999. REUTERS/Kamal Kishore</p>

Sonia Gandhi attends the party's elite Congress Working Committee (CWC) in New Delhi. 17/05/1999. REUTERS/Kamal Kishore

Sonia Gandhi attends the party's elite Congress Working Committee (CWC) in New Delhi. 17/05/1999. REUTERS/Kamal Kishore

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