Rahul Gandhi Insists To Resign As Congress Chief At CWC Meeting

Rahul Gandhi Insists To Resign As Congress Chief At CWC Meeting

Rahul Gandhi Insists To Resign As Congress Chief At CWC Meeting

New Delhi: Rahul Gandhi was adamant on resigning as president of the Congress over its appalling performance in the election even after his offer was unanimously rejected at a meeting on Saturday by the party's top leaders, who spoke once again of "thorough introspection", resorting to a refrain that has enabled much mockery of it in the past.

Rahul Gandhi, 48, told the Congress Working Committee, which consists of 52 members, that he would like to exit as its top boss nearly a year and a half after he took the job from his mother Sonia Gandhi, who was seated next to him at the meeting that ran four hours.

"We have to continue our fight. I am and will remain a disciplined soldier of the Congress and continue to fight fearlessly. But I do not want to remain the party president. It is not necessary that the president should be from Gandhi family," Mr Gandhi reportedly said.

The Congress said it "needs him", spokespersons and representatives said at a briefing that began nearly 45 minutes late amid reports that Mr Gandhi was firm on surrendering his status as chief to function as a party worker. Rahul Gandhi did not say a word as he left the meeting; he was tellingly not present at the press conference that was addressed by several Congress leaders.

Mr Gandhi will remain an MP on account of his victory from Wayanad, the constituency he contested from Kerala.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi led the BJP to a back-to-back majority, with the party improving upon its last result, a feat not accomplished in Indian politics in decades.

In December, the Congress won three major heartland states, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh. The struggle of farmers at the time against debt, crop prices and an element of anti-incumbency against the BJP, which held these states, worked well for Mr Gandhi. But the infamous Congress complacency and infighting ground down those gains at high velocity.

In the end, it turned out it wasn't even close