Congress Presidential Election: Mallikarjun Kharge Enters The Fray, Shashi Tharoor Stays Put

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Congress Presidential Election: Mallikarjun Kharge Enters The Fray, Shashi Tharoor Stays Put

| Updated: September 30, 2022 18:42

When it was widely speculated that the next president of the grand party would be a family loyalist and a close aide to the Gandhi family for decades, the eternal “jadugar” Ashok Gehlot sprung a surprise by taking out an orchestrated rebellion from his political hat, effectively managing a big cross on his name, something which he wanted.

When the suave and urbane global Malayalee Shashi Tharoor threw his hat in the ring, ex-Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh Digvijay Singh, an unflinching Congressman also decided to contest. Both were seen hugging each other and singing paeans to the internal democracy in Congress, saying that whoever wins, it is for the good of Congress.

However, the surprises do not seem to end in the great Indian political circus. In the late night development, Congress” ” Yayati syndrome” came to the fore as in order to replace the possibility of 52-year-old Rahul Gandhi, 80-year-old Mallikarjun Kharge donned the gloves against 66-year-old Sashi Tharoor in a bid to head the 137-year-old party.

The leader of oppsition in Loksabha, Mallikarjun Kharge is a dalit leader from Karnataka. Significantly, Ashok Gehlot, a frontrunner for the post prior to Rajasthan rebellion and senior leaders like Ambika Soni, AK Antony, Abhishek Singhvi, Digvijaya Singh, and Tariq Anwar were all present to endorse the Khrge candidature.

Also even more significantly, a set of all major G-23 – Congress’ internal dissenter group- members such as Anand Sharma, Bhupinder Singh Hooda, Prithviraj Chavan, Akhilesh Prasad Singh, Mukul Wasnik and Manish Tewari were present either to propose or support Kharge’s nomination signaling an end to the deadlock since 2020 when the group made a letter demanding internal elections in the party, public.

Incidentally the G-23 group didi not support Shashi Tharoor’s nomination, though he was part of the group.

Kharge, who is believd to have backing of the gandhi family in this contest said, “All leaders, workers, delegates, and ministers who came in support of me, encouraged me, I thank them… I am hopeful that I will win”

As soon as the news of Mallikarjun Kharge filing nomiation were confirmed, Digvijay Singh opted out of the race. He said “Kharge is our senior and I have told him that I will be your proposer and my commitment is towards the Congress and the Nehru-Gandhi family.” In all likelyhood, Digvijay Singh will be the leader of oppsosion in Loksabha in the event of mallikrjun Kharge becoming Congress president.

Shashi Tharoor however did not pul out and started his capmaign by visiting the Raj Ghat to pay homage to Mahatma Gandhi.He said “There is a need for decentralisation in this party. We are not an election machine for winning elections every five years. We must serve the people of India”

Hailing Kharge as ” Bhishma Pitamaha”, Shshi Tharoor however said Kharge stands for status quo. ” It is a friendly contest. We are not enemies or rivals. No disrespect to him but I will represent my ideas.” Tharoor added.

The election scheduled on October 17, would be the first in over 20 years in which a family meber of famed Nehru-Gandhi family would not be in the fray. Rahul Gandhi has firmly decline dto be at the helm and the family is insisting on a non-Gandhi Congressman to head the party.

The nominations will filed to the party’s central election authority chairman Madhusudan Mistry at his office at the AICC headquarters. The outcome will be based on the polling by 9000 PCC members. Counting of votes will take place on 19 October 2022

Also Read: RaGa’s Dilemma Continues As Congress Set To Elect Party Prez

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