Speak on issues, people are waiting: Cong official to Rahul

New Delhi, Feb 2: A Congress official reportedly asked Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi to speak out on national issues, saying people were always eager to hear him say. Sources said AICC secretary Vivek Bansal told this to Gandhi at the first meeting of the office-bearers called by the leader after his elevation in the party last month.

The demand reflected the mood of the party workers, who have been waiting for Gandhi to speak out on sensitive topics that would give them the direction to counter the opposition time and again. The heir apparent has mostly steered clear of specific issues and his followers have justified the stance as a gesture to show that the leader doesn't want to force his views on the government.

Gandhi has been rarely seen airing his views. The two instances where he took a stand were the India-US nuclear deal and the 26/11 terror attacks. While he had strongly supported the nuclear deal that had led to a face-off with the Left Front during UPA I, he described the 26/11 attacks as "enemy slapping us in our home". The strong view is believed to have contributed in the ouster of Shivraj Patil from the home ministry.

However, the leader did not speak when strong protests took to the streets in Delhi in the wake of a brutal gangrape last month or when Anna Hazare's brigade staged a big protest against corruption. Gandhi's absence from the scene during these two occasions was thought to be a negative gesture by many.

Party insiders believe that after his elevation, Rahul Gandhi needs to have a transformed approach in this respect. They believe the leader is now on the doorsteps of being projected as the party's next leader for the nation and such responsibility would require him to speak on vital issues.

AICC secretary Sagar Rayka said the party needed to address the issue of individual's accountability. He alleged that the PCC chiefs mostly backed their loyalists during the elections but later blamed the high command if the results were not up to the mark. Another official advised the party to drop its policy of not projecting a chief minister during assembly elections.

He said it was important to nominate a CM candidate for that would help the party workers to fight under a leadership and towards a direction. Absence of a CM candidate leads to a situation where powerful satraps start calling the shots.

Senior leaders of the party requested Gandhi to revamp the organisation , saying it was important that the ambience of uncertainty was overcome. Friday was the concluding day of the two-day meeting between Gandhi and his party leaders and officials.

OneIndia News

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