New Delhi, Nov 20 (IANS) The Congress on Friday said it is a vibrant democratic party and if someone is raising questions or issues about its functioning from within the party fold, it only goes to show that its style of functioning is indeed “democratic” in nature and it encourages “internal democracy”.
However, it has also categorically said that speaking in public is not good for the party.
The Congress is witnessing turmoil within, especially fuelled further by the Bihar Assembly polls and states bypolls debacle. One issue perceived to lie at the root is the selection of the Rajya Sabha candidates.
Many leaders, actually said to be a group of 23, including the likes of Kapil Sibal have questioned the leadership. However, several others have rushed to defend former President Rahul Gandhi.
Congress spokesperson Supriya Shrinate said: “I will not second guess on the future but Congress workers want Rahul Gandhi as President and CEA headed by Madhusudan Mistry will decide on the AICC session and election.”
The crisis came to the fore after 23 leaders wrote a letter to Sonia Gandhi for sweeping reforms in the party.
Sources say the internal crisis could be related to the Rajya Sabha elections in which senior leaders like Ghulam Nabi Azad and Anand Sharma, whose terms are expiring were overlooked, and people close to Rahul Gandhi like K.C. Venugopal and Rajeev Satav were nominated.
A Congress leader questioned if the party will be able to send a north Indian leader from the south to the Rajya Sabha.
While leaders like Mukul Wasnik were hoping to be nominated, however, except for Digvijaya Singh and Mallikarjun Kharge, most of the senior leaders were ignored.
Even Jitin Prasada, Sandeep Dikshit and Randeep Surjewala, who hoped for tickets, were denied the opportunity. The former two were signatories in the letter written to Sonia Gandhi.
The earlier Rajya Sabha elections also saw the revolt and exit of Jyotiraditya Scindia which cost Congress its Madhya Pradesh government.
The dissenting leaders want fresh organisational elections from block to the Congress Working Committee level to rejuvenate the cadres.
The party’s central election authority (CEA) has met twice to set the ball rolling for elections, and has sought the list of the AICC members but the G23 wants that process of AICC members elections should be done first as the old system of nomination should be done away with, and the election of the party president should be done only after new AICC members are elected.
The group is pushing for elections in the CWC, and revival of the parliamentary board in the party which is defunct.
These Congress leaders are miffed with the “inept handling” of issues by Team Rahul Gandhi who are calling the shots without any accountability and giving key assignments to inexperienced people who could not take on the BJP in any situation.