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I am standing for change: Shashi Tharoor on Congress prez poll

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‘I did not contest for my political future, but for that of the Congress and India’


THIRUVANANTHAPURAM, Oct 17: “I am standing for change”, Congress presidential poll candidate Shashi Tharoor said on Monday after casting his vote along with 264 other party delegates from the state.

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Of the total 310 delegates in Kerala, 264 cast their vote till 1 PM in favour of either Tharoor or his rival Mallikarjun Kharge, who has been openly supported by the senior party leaders in the southern state. Polling ended at 4 PM.

Prior to casting his vote, Tharoor told reporters here that there is a need for a change in how the party functions and this poll was part of that.

After casting his vote, he told reporters that he did not stand in the election for himself, but instead he stood for the Congress and the country.

“India needs a strong Congress. I did not contest for my political future, but for that of the Congress and India. I am here as a viable alternative. I am standing for change. A change in how the party functions,” he said.

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Tharoor also said that both sides would get a significant number of votes and it will not be an easy election for either side.

He also reiterated what he has been saying for some time, that the Gandhi family had told him there was no official candidate of the party.

Besides him, other senior party leaders from Kerala also cast their vote by afternoon at Indira Bhavan, the state headquarters of the Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC), which saw delegates queuing up outside since morning.

While many of the senior leaders from Kerala, the home turf of Tharoor, have openly declared their support for Kharge, the MP from Thiruvananthapuram has claimed that he has support of the youth leaders and party workers.

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Senior party leaders like Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) chief K Sudhakaran, Ramesh Chennithala and K Muraleedharan have said that Kharge was better suited for the party president post as he has risen through the ranks and was more experienced than Tharoor.

Tharoor, who has made an aggressive bid for the party’s top post, during the poll campaign had on many occasions said the Congress leaders in Kerala appeared to be against him.

This was refuted by the senior party leaders in Kerala who said that they are not opposed to Tharoor.

The Thiruvananthapuram MP had also claimed that Congress leader Rahul Gandhi was asked to coax him into withdrawing his candidature.

The counting of votes would be taken up on October 19 and the results are expected the same day.

More than 9,000 Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) delegates from across the country were expected to cast their votes during the day. (PTI)


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The Hills Times
The Hills Timeshttps://www.thehillstimes.in/
The Hills Times, a largely circulated English daily published from Diphu and printed in Guwahati, having vast readership in hills districts of Assam, and neighbouring Nagaland, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh and Manipur.
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