Sonia Gandhi back at the helm of Congress party

Sonia, Rahul Gandhi pull out of panels to choose Congress chief

Sonia Gandhi both felt that if the democratic process has to prevail and if everybody's view has to be taken, then Shri Rahul Gandhi said I will like to recuse myself for I have already tendered my resignation to the Congress Working Committee.

Bhupinder Singh Hooda, the two-time former chief minister of Haryana, in an exclusive interview to The Statesman, said that any uncertainty over the party president should be over soon as it is not good for the party.

It chose to involve office-bearers from the states, AICC secretaries, MPs, heads of the frontal organisations and party chief ministers.

Accompanied by Congress general secretary KC Venugopal, Gandhi arrived at the Karipur airport near here on Sunday afternoon. With large-scale defections in Telangana and Goa, 14 MLAs resigning in Karnataka and the party's most recognised faces in Maharashtra and Assam switching over to the BJP, can Sonia Gandhi's return stem the exodus of partymen and regroup the opposition? The western region group was has leaders such as Ghulam Nabi Azad, Mallikarjun Kharge, A K Antony and Motilal Vora.

At that time, Jyotiraditya Scindia requested Rahul Gandhi to reconsider his decision to step down, to which he replied that he was not escaping from responsibilities but would work with more dedication for the party under a new President.

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Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said several leaders who could not make it to New Delhi have been consulted over phone. They asked me for an alternative, but I said there is none.

After day-long deliberations, the Congress on Saturday failed to name a party leader from outside the Gandhi family. He said that he will spend the next two days in his constituency Wayanad in flood-hit Kerala.

The CWC members met at around 9 pm at the AICC headquarters here. As the Congress began the process of finding Rahul Gandhi's successor, senior party leader Shashi Tharoor said on Saturday the new chief should be a person who can energise the party's organisation and inspire the voters, asserting that the Congress cannot afford "business as usual".

Punjab chief minister Amarinder Singh has welcomed Sonia Gandhi's appointment as interim president of the Congress as the best decision in the current circumstances and said her experience and understanding will help guide the party. "But he is adamant on his decision, so a group has been formed for consultation with the party leaders to decide on the new chief", Surjewala said.

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