Rahul Gandhi said the Congress Working Committee (CWC), the party’s top decision-making body, should call a meeting at the earliest and decide on a new chief.
NEW DELHI: Rahul Gandhi said today it was “an honour to serve the Congress party” in a letter he tweeted hours after declaring that he was no longer the party president. A new Congress president will be chosen “within a week”, party sources have told NDTV, indicating an acceptance, finally, in the ranks that Rahul Gandhi will not return as their chief.
“It is an honour for me to serve the Congress Party, whose values and ideals have served as the lifeblood of our beautiful nation. I owe the country and my organisation a debt of tremendous gratitude and love,” he wrote in the letter.
Earlier today, he had told reporters that the Congress should choose a new president “quickly and without further delay” and that he was not part of the process at all as he had already resigned.
“The party should decide on the new president quickly without further delay, I’m nowhere in this process. I have already submitted my resignation and I am no longer the party president,” said the 49-year-old after repeatedly refusing to back down on his resignation despite his party leaders pleading with him.
Rahul Gandhi said the Congress Working Committee (CWC), the party’s top decision-making body, should call a meeting at the earliest and decide on a new chief. He reiterated what he had told NDTV earlier, that he was “not going to get involved in the process as it would complicate things”. He also said he would continue to be in the party and would continue to work.
For the third time, a non-Gandhi may take charge of the grand old party that has mostly been headed by members of the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty.
Rahul Gandhi quit as Congress president on May 25, days after leading the party to its second national election drubbing. The party could win only 52 seats in the 543-member Lok Sabha, pulverized once again in the face of Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led BJP’s massive victory.
Taking responsibility for the rout, Rahul Gandhi also criticized party leaders for weakening the Congress campaign by placing their own interests above the party. He also made it clear that the party should look at a non-Gandhi to lead it.
On June 20, he had also told NDTV: “There has to be accountability in the system.”
Sources say the CWC will meet soon to decide on his replacement, after failing to persuade him to change his mind.
In the weeks since Rahul Gandhi quit, there has been a rash of resignations in Congress across the country.