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Former CM Sheila Dikshit may replace Ajay Maken as Delhi Congress chief

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New Delhi, Jan 5: A day after senior Congress leader Ajay Maken resigned as Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee president, reports have said that former chief minister Sheila Dikshit might succeed Maken as the Delhi party head.

Senior Congress leader and Delhi former chief minister Sheila Dikshit

Maken's resignation came after a possible alliance between the Congress and the AAP in Delhi for 2019 Lok Sabha polls, while he was strongly opposed to any truck with the AAP in the national capital.

With Ajay Maken's resignation as DPCC chief, Congress-AAP alliance likely in Delhi

Dikshit's comment to accept the party line over the possibility of an alliance with Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in Delhi is likely to have helped her emerge as the frontrunner for the post, news agency Press Trust of India said quoting its sources.

While Maken has opposed any alliance with the ruling party tooth-and-nail, Dikshit has been shifting position. From being soft towards Kejriwal's outfit last summer, she has of late turned critical of the way AAP government has been working.

"The party will decide, the high command, Rahul Gandhi and all will decide and whatever they decide will be acceptable to all of us," Dikshit told news agency ANI when talks of a partnership with AAP emerged in December. Her comment is seen by the Congress leadership as a major tone down from her earlier stand, when she reprimanded Arvind Kejriwal during the conflict with Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal.

Congress leaders Yoganand Shastri, Rajkumar Chauhan, Haroon Yusuf and Chatar Singh could also be considered for the post of the party's Delhi unit chief.

The 54-year-old leader had taken over as the Congress's Delhi unit chief four years ago, after the party lost the 2015 assembly elections.

Later, Maken took to Twitter to announce his resignation.

Ajay Maken resigns as Delhi Congress chief, thanks party workers, Rahul for support

"After the 2015 Delhi assembly elections, as its Delhi unit president I received a lot of love and support from Congress workers, the media covering the party and our leader Rahul Gandhiji. It was not easy in these difficult times. Thank you all," he tweeted.

The party had in September last year denied reports of Maken's resignation and had said that he had gone abroad for a medical checkup.

Maken's resignation assumes significance amid speculations of a possible alliance between the Congress and the AAP in Delhi for 2019. He was strongly opposed to any truck with the AAP in the national capital.

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