Newly constituted CWC has reposed faith in Rahul Gandhi and said he will be the next PM.
New Delhi: At a marathon meeting of the newly-constituted Congress Working Committee here on Sunday, the party decided to project Rahul Gandhi as the Prime ministerial face in the 2019 general elections.
The CWC took a few important decisions:
*The party will forge alliance with regional parties.
*Congress ready to be flexible and will sacrifice seats if needed to allies.
*Rahul Gandhi has been given the authority to work out the alliances in all States.
*The party is expected to get 150-200 seats, thus becoming the largest single party in the next elections.
*The Congress has tweaked its strategy by trying to get maximum seats in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Punjab, Haryana.
*Congress expects support from regional players in Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Kerala, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.
*The party will not press for too many seats in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, but will make up for this in other states.
However, the Congress plans to make Rahul Gandhi the prime ministerial face ran into trouble with the SP and BSP categorically saying that they will not support such a move.
But the Congress has decided to brazen in out with its new strategy of focusing on other states, dropping UP and Bihar from its radar.
At Sunday’s meeting, 35 to 40 Congress leaders spoke stressing that the Congress should play a lead role in forging an anti-BJP front.
They argued that Rahul being the leader of the principle opposition party should be the face of the national alliance.
“I am fighting bigger fights. Everyone has the right to speak in party forum but if a party leader gives a wrong statement and weakens this fight, I will not hesitate to take an action,” Rahul is reported to have warned the CWC leaders indicting that he is the boss.
This is the first CWC meeting he is chairing after he took over as Congress President.
Rahul, in his opening remark, reminded the party supporters “the role of Congress as the voice of India as also its responsibility of present and future.”
The Congress president also hit out at the BJP saying that the party “attacks institutions, dalits, tribals, backwards, minorities and poor”. He also urged the Congressmen and women “to rise and fight for India’s oppressed.”
“The new CWC is an institution comprising experience and energy and will act as a bridge between the past, present and the future,” Rahul Gandhi said as he called upon Congressmen and women to rise and fight for India’s oppressed.
Former party president Sonia Gandhi criticised the Modi government and said the rhetoric of Prime Minister Narendra Modi shows his “desperation” reflecting that the “reverse countdown” of the Modi government has begun.
Sonia Gandhi also cautioned the people about the “reign of despair and fear” heaped upon India’s deprived and poor.
“We have to rescue our people from a dangerous regime that is compromising with the democracy of India,” she said.
“We are committed to making alliances work and we are all with Congress President Rahul Gandhi in this endeavour,” she added.
Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh trained guns at the ruling Centre and said, “It’s a culture of constant self-praise and ‘jumlas’ as against solid policy framework for driving the engine of growth.”
Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram gave a presentation and said the party can win three times more seats in the 2019 general elections by further boosting its presence in 12 states where it already has a strong foothold. The Congress currently has 48 members in the Lok Sabha.
Chidambaram emphasised the need to strengthen the party’s presence in the 12 states to boost up the numbers.
Earlier this week, Rahul had rejigged the committee and dropped senior party leaders like Digvijaya Singh, Kamal Nath, Sushil Kumar Shinde, Mohan Prakash, CP Joshi and Shashi Tharoor from the committee. He also appointed some new members including Jyotiraditya Scindia, Jitin Prasada, Tarun Gogoi, Siddaramaiah, Sheila Dikshit, Ghulam Nabi Azad, Mallikarjun Kharge.
Shortly after the conclusion of the CWC meet came a response from BJP national spokesperson Sambit Patra.
“The entire CWC meet can be summed up in two lines — ‘we don’t want to win. We have to stop Modi’,” he said during a press conference.
“On one hand, positive politics of Modi is leading the country towards growth and prosperity, on the other hand, under Rahul Gandhi’s leadership, the Congress is busy promoting a negative politics.
“The Congress has decided to play the role of a suicide bomber,” he said.
Patra also slammed Sonia Gandhi’s reverse countdown comment, saying that it was Sonia Gandhi who under her leadership had been running the country in reverse gear all these years.