Sonia Gandhi remains party chairman, sources said after a massive four-and-a-half-hour meeting tonight amid demands for a change in leadership in the face of the party’s crushing defeat in recent state polls.
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The party will soon hold a “Chintan Shivir” (brainstorming session), sources said after the evening meeting of the Working Committee – the party’s highest decision-making body.
“Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi will lead us and take future steps. We all have confidence in her leadership,” Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge told ANI news agency after the meeting.
“She (Sonia Gandhi) remains the chairman of the party. Detailed discussions were held about the elections in the five states (during the meeting). We discussed how to move things forward and prepare for the upcoming elections” , Goa of Congress in-charge Dinesh Gundu Rao said, ANI reported.
More than 50 leaders attended the rally – a number surpassing the combined strength of the MLAs and Congressional MPs from the five states where the elections were held, Uttar Pradesh, Goa, Uttarakhand, Manipur and Punjab.
The magnitude of Congressional defeat had sparked a renewed demand for sweeping organizational change and responsible leadership — first introduced two years ago when a group of 23 dissenters — later dubbed the G-23 — wrote an explosive letter to Sonia. Gandhi.
This time, the top leadership also came under fierce criticism from other quarters, albeit off the record. There has been criticism that Rahul Gandhi, who dies not holding an official position after resigning as congressional chairman following the party’s second consecutive national election defeat in 2019, continues to take matters into his own hands.
Decisions by him and his sister Priyanka Gandhi Vadra have been seen as responsible for the party’s defeat in Punjab and Uttar Pradesh.
There are only three members of the “G-23” in the CWC – Anand Sharma, Ghulam Nabi Azad and Mukul Wasnik.
Before the meeting, the Congress denied rumors that the Gandhis will resign from their official positions. Several leaders tweeted their support for Rahul Gandhi.
Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot said Rahul Gandhi should be the head of the congress. “For the past three decades, none of the Gandhi family has become prime minister or minister. It is important to understand that the Gandhi family is important for the unity of Congress,” he told ANI news agency.