Sonia not to endorse anyone for Congress top post

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Sources said Sonia Gandhi asserted that the polls will be fair and she will not endorse any candidate…reports Asian Lite News

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, who is most likely to contest the poll to elect the next Congress President scheduled to held on October 17, met interim party chief Sonia Gandhi in New Delhi on Wednesday.

In the meeting which lasted for nearly two hours, sources said Sonia Gandhi asserted that the polls will be fair and she will not endorse any candidate.

The sources said that the issue of Rajasthan in the event of Gehlot joining national politics was also discussed, but there is no official word on it yet.

Gehlot is tipped to file his nomination next week for the Congress President’s post; however, he is reportedly reluctant to leave the Chief Minister’s chair in Rajasthan.

Gehlot, who arrived in the national capital on Wednesday morning, had told the media ahead of the meeting that he will not back out from any responsibility.

“I will not back out from any responsibility and will serve the party wherever and in whichever capacity I am required in this hour of crisis,” he said.

However, Gehlot also said that the party wants Rahul Gandhi to take over as the next Congress President.

Gehlot also dropped hint that he can manage the posts of both the party chief and Chief Minister of Rajasthan simultaneously.

The Rajasthan Chief Minister said he is not aspiring for any post, but wants to work towards ousting the ‘fascist’ BJP government.

Meanwhile, Congress MP Shashi Tharoor on Wednesday arrived at the AICC office here to check the delegates’ list ahead of the issuance of notification for the Congress presidential polls, as he is also expected to file his nomination for the top post next week.

‘Will stay where party benefits’

Amid the ongoing speculation about his candidature in the Congress presidential polls, Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot on Wednesday said that he would like to stay where the party benefits.

He said “If the people of the party want me, if they feel that I am fit for the post of president or the post of CM, then I cannot refuse. Position doesn’t matter to me.”

Will you continue to be the chief minister, he was asked.

He replied, “I am not talking about staying or not, time will tell where I live, where I do not live, but I would like to live where the party benefits from my stay. I will not remain behind in that case,” he added.

Gehlot, speaking about his visit to Kochi said, “4-5 days ago, I had proposed in the Pradesh Congress Committee that Rahul Gandhi ji should accept the post of president, we wish that he agrees to travel as Congress president, then there will be more aura for the party. I am going to talk to him one more time, I will request one more time to Rahul Gandhi ji, after that I will decide, then I will meet you,” he told the media.

Speaking on the one post, one person formula, he said, “My wish is not to stay in any position, because I have held many positions. Party should benefit from my presence, Congress should be strong, I want this. The party has given me a lot.”

Asked if he can handle both the posts — chief minister and president — Gehlot said, “I told you that whether I am in first position, 2nd position, 3rd post or anywhere, I will not mind. My wish will be that I will not stay on any post now, I have held a lot of posts, now I should enter the field, tour with Rahul Gandhi ji, travel, bring people on the streets and open a front against fascist people, the party has given me everything, today the party is in trouble. I will not back down wherever I am needed to strengthen the Congress,” he added.

Recently, during a meeting of Congress delegates in Jaipur, Gehlot had passed a resolution demanding that Rahul Gandhi be elected as the party president by asking members to raise their hands.

Gehlot’s visit to Kochi is also being seen as a similar exercise. After Gehlot’s visit to Delhi and Kochi, there is a program of further political tours. For three to four days, Gehlot will stay in Delhi and prepare a strategy for the election of the president.

Gehlot’s visit to Kochi is considered important for the election of the party president as well as for the politics of Rajasthan. If he contests the election of the president, then there will be a discussion on the role of his former Deputy CM Sachin Pilot. Pilot has also gone to Kochi to join Rahul Gandhi’s Yatra.

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