New Delhi: Amid the question of survival a high pitch drama is on in congress with Rahul Gandhi is adamant on quitting as Congress President.
Hundreds of Delhi Congress workers along with former Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit will assemble outside Congress President Rahul Gandhi’s residence to appeal him to withdraw his offer to step down from the party’s top post. They may do it at 4pm today.
The Congress chief has offered to step down from the post in CWC meet on 25th May following the dismal performance of the party in the Lok Sabha elections. Since then many senior congress leaders have said it in public that they are requesting Rahul Gandhi not to resign.
A day before many Congress leaders were seen visiting Rahul’s official residence at 12, Tuglaq Road including his sister and party general secretary Priyanka Gandhi.
Congress is not in the crisis only at central level but its state units in Gujarat, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Karnataka also looked in disarray and vulnerable to a collapse.
A host of party leaders met the angry and sulking Congress President at his residence and Gandhi is believed to have conveyed to them that he could at best lead the party in Parliament as the chief of the Congress Parliamentary Party.
As he stayed firm on quitting, suggestions poured in noisily from other members that he should not do so but appoint a Working President or a Vice President to look after day-to-day functioning.
Congress leaders said that if he had agreed to withdraw his resignation, there was scope for further discussion but because of his response there is no further progress on the matter.
With Gandhi remaining adamant, a presidium system to govern the party is being considered, wherein a group of senior leaders will run the show.
According to the party sources, Gandhi is unlikely to be the party leader in the Lok Sabha and the post may go to someone else as happened in the previous House. But he can be the CPP leader.
The leaders said Gandhi had taken the party’s poor showing in the Lok Sabha elections personally and offered to step down as the Congress President and called for someone outside the Gandhi family to head the party.
He has told senior leaders that he did not want to get into the appointments of state unit and district chiefs.
The party is in deep crisis as resignations by senior leaders are piling up across the states ever since its poor show in the Lok Sabha polls in which it bagged only 52 seats in the 543-member House. The number is just 8 more than it got in the last Lok Sabha elections.
Gandhi is particularly unhappy with Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot as he feels he did not do enough for the party to be able to score well in the Lok Sabha elections in the state where the Congress performed well in the Assembly polls and formed the government only six months back.
The Congress is expected to call another CWC meeting within the next four days.
Gandhi had blamed Gehlot and Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath for devoting more time in the constituencies of their sons instead of doing more for the party in the elections.