Only candidate Rahul 'frontrunner' in Congress presidential polls

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Rahul Gandhi has emerged the lone candidate in the fray, and decks have been cleared for him to succeed his mother, who has headed the Congress party for 19 consecutive years. This was announced by M Ramachandran, Returning officer on Tuesday.

Rahul Gandhi

"89 nomination papers all proposing names of #RahulGandhi have been received, have scrutinized each &found all valid. There is now only one validly nominated candidate that is Rahul Gandhi left in the fray for Congress president election," he added.

Rahul Gandhi on Monday filed nomination for the post of party president, heralding a generational shift in the leadership of the grand old party seeking a revival in its electoral fortunes.

With no other claimants in the fray, his elevation as Congress president is almost certain.

The 47-year-old Gandhi scion is set take over the party's reins from Sonia Gandhi, who has steered the party for 19 years, including the 10 when it led the UPA government.

Accompanied by a host of senior party leaders, including former prime minister Manmohan Singh, Rahul Gandhi filed his papers before the party's Central Election Committee.

With speculation over whether or not Rahul Gandhi who was appointed vice president in January 2013 will step into his mother's shoes finally ending, the party's leaders hailed the day as "historic".

They exuded confidence that he will carry forward the party's traditions and lead it to victory in the next general elections in 2019.

The move also comes just ahead of the elections in Gujarat, which goes to the polls on December 9 and 14.

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