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Congress leaders to meet this week over leadership crisis

May 29, 2019

The head of the Congress party, Rahul Gandhi remains adamant over his decision not to head the party. For the second day in a row, he refused to meet anyone, making it clear that he is not changing his mind.

Reports are that many Congress leaders went to Rahul Gandhi's home on Tuesday morning but could only meet his sister Priyanka Gandhi Vadra. Both, Ashok Gehlot and Sachin Pilot, the top two leaders of Rajasthan Congress, locked in a leadership battle, were unable to meet him.

Among the solutions being offered is for Rahul Gandhi to be leader of the Congress in the Lok Sabha even if he steps down as party chief. Gandhi has refused to change his mind on quitting as party chief.

He will not change his mind, though I want him to continue. He was not happy with some of our seniors. The way they behaved, he felt they should have worked hard but they were not up to his expectations. - Tarun Gogoi, Member, Congress Working Committee

Gogoi said that when Gandhi was asked in the CWC meeting whether a "general should run away", he said that he was not running away but was going to fight harder.

Gandhi has asked two Congress leaders, Ahmed Patel and KC Venugopal, to look for his replacement, according to sources. Sources say the party is coming to terms with his decision and is looking at the idea of a new chief. This choice will have to be approved of by all three Gandhis - Rahul Gandhi, Sonia Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi.

Gandhi has said his sister and mother cannot be considered as party heads. The Congress has mostly been led by members of the Nehru-Gandhi family and has not done very well under the a non-Gandhi leader, like Sitaram Kesri.

The Congress has not won a single seat in 18 states and union territories and won only 52 seats in the 543-member Lok Sabha. This is not enough to qualify even for the post of Leader of Opposition. A party needs 55 seats for that.

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