After the decimation in the recently concluded elections, the bells can finally be heard tolling as now the grand old party serves in just two states independently namely, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh.
The working committee of the party recently met to assess and analyze the path to be taken ahead. However, a section of dissident leaders of the party better known as G-23 were supposedly unhappy with its outcome.
The group came into limelight back in 2020 when it wrote to the party chief Sonia Gandhi for sweeping changes. The group includes prominent leaders including former Union Ministers and former Chief Ministers.
On Wednesday, few members of the same group along with some new entrants met at the residence of Former Leader of opposition in Rajya Sabha and Former CM of Jammu and Kashmir Ghulam Nabi Azad to discuss the way forward and concluded that it was imperative to adopt a model of collective and inclusive leadership and decision-making at all levels.
The meeting was attended by Congress stalwarts such as Kapil Sibal, Shashi Tharoor, Raj Babbar, Manish Tewari, Prithviraj Chavan, Manishankar Aiyer, Bhupinder Singh Hooda, PJ Kurain, Sandeep Dixit and Preneet Kaur, wife of former Punjab CM Capt. Amarinder Singh to name a few.
Notably, the agenda of the meeting was not aimed at the failure of Gandhis but rather to discuss the demoralising outcome of the recent Assembly election results and the constant exodus of the party workers and leaders. An important statement accepting that the party can no longer work single handedly was made by the signatories of the letter mentioning that “In order to oppose the BJP, it is necessary to strengthen the Congress party. We demand the Congress party to initiate dialogue with other likeminded forces to create a platform to pave the way for a credible alternative for 2024.”
This comes at a time when Congress is at its lowest since independence, where it has a minimal representation in Lok Sabha as well as in terms of its victory in various state elections, an example of the fiasco is its performance in Uttar Pradesh where it could secure only 2 seats out of a 403 seats strong assembly.
The reports of the rift grew stronger since Sonia Gandhi sacked all five party chiefs of the said states and appointed five veterans of the party to assess post poll situation and lay down organizational changes in the states where elections were recently concluded.
While the Gandhi loyalists have lauded the move, a section has termed it as a mere eyewash stating that the incumbent secretaries who had an equal role for party’s performance in the election are still holding their posts.
Alas, it looks like that some members have still not learnt their lessons, as recently Kapil Sibal in an interview had said that he wanted ‘Sab ki Congress’ rather than ‘Ghar ki Congress’, thus he openly expressed his desire for the Gandhis to step down and let someone else be at the helm, to which several leaders including Gehlot, Rajasthan CM and Kharge, Leader of opposition in Rajya Sabha were quick to backfire and said ‘Sibal never went to any village to work for Congress’ and is doing nothing but ‘deliberately trying to weaken the Congress party’. The question here remains the same, that can the Congress finally come to terms with reality and change the approach in almost all its ways, or has it already missed the bus.