Gandhis likely to skip CWC meeting, more heads will roll
New Delhi, July 5: Gandhi family members are likely to skip the Congress Working Committee (CWC) meeting in which party's next President would be elected, said sources.
Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday formally resigned as Congress president, taking responsibility for the Lok Sabha polls debacle. Congress could win only 52 seats in 2019 Lok Sabha elections i.e 08 more seats than its tally of 2014 general elections.
In the four-page open letter, Rahul Gandhi urged the CWC to entrust a group of people with the task of finding a new president as it would not be proper for him to do so.
According to insiders, when the CWC meeting is convened then Rahul Gandhi, Sonia Gandhi, and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra are likely to skip the crucial meeting in order to give a message that Gandhi family doesn't have any role in electing the new President.
"The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has been levelling charges of dynasty politics in Congress, which Rahul Gandhi doesn't like at all. Though Sonia and Priyanka don't react to the charge, Rahul not only speaks about it but also sarcastically reminds that no member of his family has been part of government from last 30 years," says a party insider.
It's notable that when Rahul Gandhi had proposed to resign on May 25 in the CWC meeting, he had categorically told the party leaders that name of his sister Priyanka Gandhi Vadra won't be acceptable as his replacement.
"This shows that Rahul has made up his mind to absolve the Congress from the allegation of family-run party. By resigning, Rahul has also upped pressure on other senior leaders to take responsibility of the Lok Sabha drubbing by resigning from their posts. One should not be surprised if senior Congress leaders tender their resignations in the upcoming CWC meeting," says the insider.
In his resignation letter, Rahul had written that "Rebuilding the party requires hard decisions and numerous people will have to be made accountable for the failure of 2019. It would be unjust to hold others accountable but ignore my own responsibility as President of the party".
In his Twitter account, Rahul Gandhi's designation as "president" of Congress was also changed to "Member of Congress and Member of Parliament".
It's notable that Rahul Gandhi didn't blink despite almost entire party requested him to do so.
Several Congress chief ministers, including Ashok Gehlot from Rajasthan, Amarinder Singh from Punjab, and Kamal Nath from Madhya Pradesh had offered to quit in an attempt to placate Gandhi. Members of Youth Congress had also staged a demonstration outside his residence last week, urging him to retain the party's top post. A number of leaders from several state units had also tendered their resignation, citing "collective responsibility".
Who are in Congress President's race?
After Rahul Gandhi's resignation, several names are doing the rounds as his replacement.
According to the sources, Rahul Gandhi continues to be the interim President of the party till the CWC elects a new President.
The names of the Gandhi family loyalists former Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde and former leader of the Congress in the Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge have been doing the rounds for the top post ever since Rahul offered to resign in May.
Sources also say that former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister and one of the senior-most general secretaries of Congress Ghulam Nabi Azad is also in the race.
A political analyst tells One India that though Rahul has resigned and the Congress will get a new President but it won't be easy to make people believe that the new President won't be taking dictates from the Gandhi family.