The process for the election of Congress president got underway, Sunday, with the party’s election authority confirming it would stick to the September 20 deadline for electing a new chief. According to the party’s Central Election Authority chairman Madhusudan Mistry: “The Congress Working Committee (CWC) is yet to decide on any one final date for the election. It could be any day between August 21 to September 20. We will stick to the schedule” However, Mistry added the election authority is in the process of finalising the AICC delegates who will vote for the party’s top post.
The CWC had decided that elections for block committees and one member each of the Pradesh Congress Committee will be held from April 16 to May 31, 2022; district committee chiefs and executive will be elected between June 1 and July 20, PCC chiefs and AICC members between July 21 and August 20, 2022 and AICC president between August 21 and September 20.
Asked if organisational elections at the level of Block, District and Pradesh Congress Committees have concluded, he informed the process stood duly completed.
Alongside, the G-23 is keeping close tabs on the election process and its transparency. The clique comprises prominent veterans including former Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad and his deputy Anand Sharma, besides Bhupinder Singh Hooda and Manish Tewari. However, most seniors maintain they are unaware of the plan. With Rahul Gandhi sticking to his firm “no,” seems the grand old party is headed for a non-Gandhi president. As of Sunday, there was no clarity on whether Rahul Gandhi will agree to run for the Congress president’s post, with large sections of the party noting that he seemed “disinterested.”
In May 2019, Sonia Gandhi had agreed to become interim president of the party after Rahul Gandhi resigned following the Congress loss in General Elections. For several months after May 2019, there was complete silence within the Congress circles on the election of a full-time party chief until late July 2020 when G-23 leaders in a letter to Sonia Gandhi sought urgent elections across all levels of the party, to revive its sagging electoral fortunes. Subsequently in October 2021, the CWC approved a tentative schedule for the internal elections.