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Congress Units In Punjab, Telangana Too Pass Resolutions Seeking Rahul As Cong President

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The Congress’ central election authority will issue a notification for the AICC president polls today


NEW DELHI/CHANDIGARH/HYDERABAD, Sept 21: The Congress’ state units in Punjab and Telangana on Wednesday passed a resolution backing Rahul Gandhi for the post of the party president.

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Around a dozen Pradesh Congress Committees have so far come out in support of Gandhi, even as it appears that after over two decades, the Congress is likely to see a contest for the post of party chief.

Former Union minister and Kerala MP Shashi Tharoor is looking set to enter the fray and Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot has indicated that he could throw his hat in the ring if Rahul Gandhi does not agree to take on the party’s reins.

The Congress’ central election authority will issue a notification for the AICC president polls on Thursday, setting the ball rolling for electing the successor to the longest-serving party chief Sonia Gandhi.

On Wednesday, a resolution backing Rahul Gandhi for the top post was moved by Punjab Congress chief Amrinder Singh Raja Warring and seconded by Congress Legislative Party leader Partap Singh Bajwa in Chandigarh.

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Sharing details of the resolution, Warring said party delegates and other senior party leaders requested Rahul Gandhi to become national president of the Congress party.

He said the resolution in this regard was passed unanimously.

The party delegates and leaders also authorised the party president to make anyone an AICC member and Pradesh Congress Committee chief.

Warring informed that nearly 290 party delegates and senior party leaders attended the meeting.

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The Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) also passed similar resolutions at a meeting presided by party leader Rajmohan Unnithan, Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader Mallu Bhatti Vikramarka told reporters in Hyderabad.

Gehlot is considered a frontrunner for the post as he is perceived to be having the backing and confidence of the present dispensation while the odds are heavily stacked against Tharoor, a member of the G-23 dissident group that had raised hackles in the party over its criticism of the current leadership.

The nomination filing will start from September 25 to 30. The election will be held on October 17 and the result will be out two days later.

Haryana and Jharkhand Pradesh Congress Committees (PCCs) on Tuesday join the chorus favouring Rahul Gandhi to take over as party chief.

Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Bihar, Maharashtra, Haryana, Jharkhand and Jammu Kashmir units of the party have supported Rahul Gandhi as the next Congress president, a post he quit in 2019 after the Lok Sabha debacle.

Party general secretary Jairam Ramesh had said on Tuesday that such resolutions have no binding effect.

“But nobody asked anyone to pass any resolution. The Congress party workers are enthusiastic. Rahul Gandhi has not asked anyone to pass any resolution. The Congress president has not asked anyone.

“They have been watching Gandhi walking for the past 13 days. They know the pain he is undergoing every day. They all can relate to him. It’s natural that they pass the resolution. But the resolution has no binding effect,” Ramesh had said, referring to the Bharat Jodo Yatra yatra.

Ramesh on Wednesday said the party is not running away from an election and it will be fair and transparent.

At the same time, he also said that he believes in the selection of the party president based on consensus as per the Kamraj model.

He invoked the “view” of legendary Congress leader K Kamaraj, which according to him, was “talk to everybody and find a suitable consensus choice” for leading the party.

“If consensus is not possible, then elections are desirable. We are not running away from holding elections,” he said.

The party last saw a contest for the post in November 2000. Jitendra Prasada lost to Sonia Gandhi in 2000.

Prior to that, Sitaram Kesri had defeated Sharad Pawar and Rajesh Pilot in 1997. (PTI)



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