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CWC rejects Rahul's offer to quit; authorises him to restructure Congress
Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and Manmohan Singh. Tribune photo: Mukesh Aggarwal

CWC rejects Rahul's offer to quit; authorises him to restructure Congress

25 May 2019 | 4:53 PM

NEW DELHI: Congress Working Committee refused to accept Congress president Rahul Gandhi's resignation over the party's loss in the general elections, a party spokesperson said on Saturday.

[ + read story ]

Aditi Tandon
Tribune News Service
New Delhi, May 25

Congress Working Committee refused to accept Congress president Rahul Gandhi's resignation over the party's loss in the general elections, a party spokesperson said on Saturday.

Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala told the press at a briefing after the meeting that the Congress believed they needed Gandhi's leadership. 

"CWC called upon Rahul Gandhi to lead party in these challenging times," Surjewala told the press. 

The party ended up with 52 seats in the general elections—only eight more that it won in 2014.  

The Congress Working Committee met here for four hours to introspect over the Lok Sabha 2019 poll loss and passed a unanimous resolution authorising Congress president Rahul Gandhi to restructure the party at all levels to revive it to fulfil the aspirations of people.

The Congress denied the offer of resignation by Gandhi, with top CWC sources indicating to The Tribune that the committee passed a resolution tasking Gandhi to restructure the party even before he began addressing the meeting.

This resolution was moved by former leader of Congress in Lok Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge and unanimously passed by the CWC. In a sense, therefore, the CWC preempted any move by Gandhi to make an offer of resignation.

Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in his remarks suggested constitution of a committee to go into causes of loss and suggest corrective measures quite on the lines of the AK Antony Committee set up after the 2014 loss of the Congress.

Rahul Gandhi in his address said the battle was no longer of ideologies but of ideas, which the BJP invented speedily.

Gandhi admitted the Congress narrative was not accepted by the people and said the party would have to look at the ‘New India’ and acknowledge that the aspirational India needed new narratives.

Gandhi said the BJP changed its election time ideas fast to gain poll advantage, something the Congress would need to see.

It’s learnt that several leaders raised concerns at the meeting of EVM tampering with both Ahmed Patel and Ghulam Nabi Azad speaking about the issue.

Azad is learnt to have said in the meeting, “We lost to EVMs and not to the BJP.”

Many leaders, however, sought to deflect the EVM issue, with Jyotiraditya Scindia saying the Congress must accept its defeat and introspect.

Punjab CM Amarinder Singh also spoke of EVMs and said why can’t the machines be replaced with paper ballots when most advanced countries have done so.

A committee to go into causes of losses may soon be formed.

In 2014, then president Sonia Gandhi and vice-president Rahul Gandhi had offered their resignations which the CWC rejected. Even in 2014, the CWC resolution had authorised Sonia Gandhi to restructure the party at all levels.

Today’s CWC said almost the same thing.

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