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Did not enter Congress presidential race to oppose anyone but to strengthen party: Kharge

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New Delhi, Oct 02: Veteran Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge, who is being considered the 'official' Congress president candidate by some quarters on Sunday said he has entered the Congress presidential race to oppose anyone "but to strengthen the party".

Kharge also informed that he has quit as the leader of the opposition in the Rajya Sabha under the party's "one man, one post" rule.

Did not enter Congress presidential race to oppose anyone but to strengthen party: Kharge

"I have not entered the Congress presidential polls to oppose anyone but to strengthen the party. The day I filed my nomination, I gave a resignation from my post aligning with the 'One Person One Post' decision of the party taken in Udaipur. I officially begin my campaign for the post of Congress party president today," Kharge was quoted as saying by news agency PTI.

Congress president poll: K N Tripathi's nomination form rejectedCongress president poll: K N Tripathi's nomination form rejected

The 80-year-old leader also rejected suggestions that the Gandhi family was backing him, saying he was urged by other leaders to contest.

"Many senior leaders of the party have supported my nomination for Congress president post. Many leaders of the party told me that I should contest the elections. Due to their encouragement, I am contesting the elections today," said Kharge.

"There is no G23 camp now. All leaders (of G23) want to work together to stay united and fight against BJP-RSS. This is the reason they are supporting me," he added.

Congress presidential polls will see contest between Kharge and Tharoor after former Jharkhand minister K N Tripathi's nomination was rejected on Saturday.

Nearly 9,100 leaders are eligible to cast their votes in the October 17 election.

Mallikarjun Kharge
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Mallikarjun Kharge

The Congress presidential election result will be out on October 19.

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