Senior Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar on Sunday said that the party can have a 'Non-Gandhi' chief, but maintained that the Gandhis must remain active in the management of the party even after Rahul Gandhi has offered his resignation after the 2019 Lok Sabha debacle.
Aiyar said that the Congress leadership can be passed on to a member who is not from the Gandhi family, but added that the presence of Gandhi family is crucial within the organization.
“I am sure we can survive if we have to without a Nehru-Gandhi as the titular head of the party, provided the Nehru-Gandhis remain active in the party and can help resolve a crisis in case serious differences arise. Rahul has given about a month to the party to find a replacement and there have been confabulations within the Congress over the issue with the feeling in the party overwhelmingly in favour of Rahul staying on,” Aiyar said to the news agency PTI.
This development has come after there have been demands from UP Congress leaders for the appointment of Priyanka Gandhi Vadra as the Congress face in the upcoming Uttar Pradesh elections, amid the 'resignation drama' by Rahul Gandhi.
Gandhi offered to quit during the Congress Working Committee meeting on May 25. However, the senior leadership of the party unanimously rejected Rahul Gandhi's resignation.
Party workers and leaders are still holding on to hopes that Gandhi will continue to lead the party as the 'Nehru-Gandhi' family is the holding pillar for the Congress Party. However, the state counterparts of INC are disappointed over the massive defeat of their party in the Lok Sabha elections where they managed to win just 52 seats.
Aiyar said that Rahul Gandhi has given a month's time to the party to find a replacement. Even so, the party members prefer having Rahul Gandhi as the president. In addition, the senior Congress leader also cited an example of members were Congress presidents like U N Dhebar to Brahmananda Reddy, hence insisting to bring in a similar model. He also said that all parties should come together for a grand opposition for India, before putting out political gains.