Sonia focusses on State elections; AICC to meet only after polls

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on August 13, 2019 Published on August 13, 2019

Sonia Gandhi, Congress interim president   -  PTI

Congress’ interim president Sonia Gandhi will soon convene meetings of party’s office bearers in election-bound Bihar, Haryana, Jharkhand, Maharashtra and Delhi.

Her move gives a clear indication that the AICC session to elect the new president will take place only after the States’ polls.

While the terms of the Haryana and Maharashtra Assemblies end in November, 2019, elections to Jharkhand (January), Bihar (November) and Delhi (February) will take place in 2020. A senior leader leader in the party said that she will hold meetings with the legislative party and party organisation leaders to assess the situation. “This is her way of handling an election. She would hold meetings with senior party leaders in respective States much ahead of the polls,” the leader said.

There are also indications that she is unlikely to change the general secretaries and States’ in-charge appointed by Rahul Gandhi. “Usually, the general secretaries, State in-charge get changed as the new president takes over. But speculations are that she has no plans to change the present set of leaders,” another leader said.

Rahul Gandhi had brought in several changes when he took the mantle from his mother. Sonia Gandhi’s trusted lieutenant Janardan Dwivedi was removed as AICC general secretary in-charge of the organisation. He had also inducted youngsters in the key departments.

The Congress suffered huge setbacks in all the poll-bound States in the 2014 and 2019 Lok Sabha election. The party lost Haryana and Maharashtra to the National Democratic Alliance. In Delhi, the AAP won in 2015. The BJP managed to split the Grand Alliance of the Rashtriya Janata Dal, the Congress and the Janata Dal (United), which won the elections in 2015.

Members happy

A host of senior leaders in the party are happy that Sonia Gandhi is back at the helm. “The confusion is over. We know her working style and how she handles situations. So it will be good for the party now,” a CWC member said.

Published on August 13, 2019

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