Senior Congress leader and former External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid has said the departure of Rahul Gandhi ( steeping down as Congress president after 2019 Lok Sabha polls) has left a vacuum in the party.
Weeks ahead of the assembly polls in Haryana and Maharashtra on October 21, Khurshid said Congress may not be able to win the elections or ensure its own future, as per a report by the Associated Press.
66 year-old Khurshid, is quoted by the Associated Press as saying that the 49-year-old Gandhi “left in a huff” and his mother Sonia Gandhi appears to be treating herself as a stop-gap until a new Congress chief is chosen, possibly after the October state polls.
“We haven’t really got together to analyse why we got defeated. Our biggest problem is our leader has walked away,” Khurshid was quoted as saying, adding that Rahul Gandhi still retained the allegiance of the party.
Congress won only 52 of the 542 parliamentary seats in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, compared to 303 won by the Bharatiya Janata Party. The party faces crucial tests in October 21 when Haryana and Maharashtra go to polls.
After the defeat in May, Rahul Gandhi resigned as Congress president and his mother, Sonia Gandhi, stepped in on an interim basis.
Recently, the Congress chief in Haryana, Ashok Tanwar, quit following a difference with the party’s leadership over a choice of candidates. Ashok Tanwar was among the Congress’s main campaigners in the party’s bid to wrest power from the Bharatiya Janata Party in Haryana.
A revolt is also brewing in Maharashtra too. Sanjay Nirupam, a key state leader there, recently threatened to quit the party after his recommendations for its nominees were rejected by the party leadership.