Not declaring Rahul as PM nominee a right strategy: Congress

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Hyderabad, Apr 30: Accusing BJP of running a person-centric campaign projecting Narendra Modi as its prime ministerial candidate, Congress on Wednesday claimed that not declaring party vice-president Rahul Gandhi's name for the country's top post was a "right strategy".

"Indian elections are not personality clashes. It's the party system. Our politics runs on party system," Union Minister and senior party leader Jairam Ramesh said.

When asked if Congress should have projected Rahul as the party's PM nominee, he said, "Absolutely not."

"We were very clear that Rahul Gandhi is not going to be declared the prime ministerial candidate. Unlike BJP, the Congress campaign has not been individual centric," Ramesh said.

"There is a hype for Modi. But there is no hype for BJP. BJP has been completely marginalised. It's 'vote for Modi'. They have only one-point agenda," he added.

According to the minister, in the parliamentary form of government, elections are based on contest between parties, their ideologies, history, programmes and pledges.

"Okay. There were giants like Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi, who perhaps in more ways make a party and have stature much greater than the party. But ultimately, it's the Congress. Our strategy has always been 'let's focus on the party'," Ramesh said.

Meanwhile, Congress general secretary Digvijay Singh also said, "We never do (never declare PM candidate)...it's never done."

The former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister, however, noted, "In the 2009 elections, we had an incumbent Prime Minister (Manmohan Singh).

So, Sonia Gandhi declared him as the prime ministerial candidate. Now, he has voluntarily stepped out of the race."

PTI

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