Ashok Gehlot, the next president of Congress? Why Rajasthan’s Prime Minister Raise Isn’t The Change The Party Needs


Ashok Gehlot, 71, has been a longtime loyalist of the Gandhi family and Sonia Gandhi has consulted with him on various party issues. PTIA

Congressional presidential polls are quickly becoming the hottest topic — with politicians and the public looking to see if the Grand Old Party will see a non-Gandhi president for the first time in 20 years.

The competition is limited to two persons: Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and Thiruvanathapuram MP Shashi Tharoor. While many state units have passed resolutions supporting Rahul Gandhi’s return as president, young Gandhi, who is engaged in the Bharat Jodo Yatra, remains determined to take responsibility.

With just days before the nomination window closes, developments in the contest are rolling in fast and furious. We decipher what’s going on and how Ashok Gehlot’s promotion may not be as radical as it seems.

Gehlot meets Sonia

On Wednesday, Rajasthan’s Ashok Gehlot met Congress chief Sonia Gandhi at her residence at 10 Janpath for nearly two hours. Congress General Secretary KC Venugopal and Treasurer Pawan Kumar Bansal were also reportedly in attendance.

While he didn’t reveal the exact details of his meeting with the congressional head, Gehlot later told reporters that he could throw in his hat for the congressional presidential poll, if the party people so wish and he fulfilled any responsibility. which he gave to him.

However, he also said he will make a last-ditch effort to convince Rahul Gandhi to take the post of party chairman.

Gehlot said he will make decisions that strengthen Congress. “The party and the high command have given me everything. I’ve been in the post for 40-50 years. For me, no post is important, I will fulfill any responsibility given to me,” he said by a The Bharat Express News report.

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Did you see a sweeping change for Congress?

With Ashok Gehlot and Shashi Tharoor considered to be the contenders for the upcoming Congressional presidential election – to be held on October 17 – this will be the first time a non-Gandhi has taken over the mantle in more than two decades.

Also Read:Dhoti Pulled Out, Locked In Bathroom: How Sonia Gandhi ‘Throwed To The Footpath’ Congress’ Last Non-Gandhi President

Many have commented that this is the kind of change Congress requires, at a time when their political future is in complete slump.

However, the ascent of Ashok Gehlot, who is seen as the Gandhis’ favorite for the top post, would not be the change the side is looking for.

Amarinder Singh, the former prime minister of Punjab who transitioned to the Bharatiya Janata party on Monday, told News18 that the elevation of the Rajasthan Prime Minister to party chairman would benefit those who wanted him there, rather than the party itself.

“Good for whom? Congress or… those who want him to be president,” Amarinder Singh said when asked if Gehlot was a good choice.

When further asked that if Gehlot became president, he would control the party, the former prime minister said: “The answer lies only in your question. When questions are raised about the actual authority of the president, it is clear who will take charge.”

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It is a well-known fact that 71-year-old Ashok Gehlot has long been a loyalist to the Gandhi family. He is consulted by both Sonia and Rahul Gandhi on crucial matters and many believe that if he became chief he would pose no threat to the family.

The Rajasthan Prime Minister has been a member of the party for about five decades, has extensive experience in leading organizations and elections and is a mass leader. Gehlot, a former Union minister, has the ranks in the party and has experience building organizations. In fact, Gehlot also played an important role in the party’s superlative in the Gujarat Assembly polls – the home state of Prime Minister Narendra Modi – in 2017. year are planned.

In addition, Gehlot is an OBC leader and does not come from any political dynasty. While nearly all political parties have tried to win over the OBC ballot box — a determinant in polls — Congress has often been criticized for its obsession with the Gandhi dynasty. Being president of Congress will be a strong response to those who label Congress as a one-family party.

However, Gehlot’s experience and long stay at the convention can also be detrimental. Political pundits argue that the Rajasthan Prime Minister may be reluctant to think outside the box. Also, because of his close ties to the Gandhis, many would question whether he would continue the current system.

Tharoor prepares for competition

In the meantime, Lok Sabha MP Shashi Tharoor has laid the groundwork for submitting his nomination papers. After meeting Sonia Gandhi on Tuesday, he met Madhusudan Mistry, chairman of the Congress’ Central Electoral Authority, at AICC headquarters and discussed electoral rules and procedures, including the submission of nominations and campaigns. He also looked at the electoral roll of about 9,000 PCC deputies who will vote in the election.

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Madhusudan Mistry confirmed the same, telling ANI news agency: “We have answered all his questions about the Congress presidential election. We explained to him about the election rule, the number of agents and their roles, and discussed how to fill out the election form.”

Tharoor, a member of the G-23 group that had called for organizational reforms and full-time, visible leadership of the party by 2020, threw in his hat and is considered by many to be a breath of fresh air that Congress desperately needs. .

The MP from Thiruvananathapuram, which enjoys a large following among the young and educated middle class, could bring new ideas to the party and also introduce a global perspective thanks to his former career as a diplomat.

With input from agencies

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