Amid Congress infighting, Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh has opined that there is no "too much to read" in the Bihar election results and that there is no need to change the leadership within the Congress. This comes in stark contrast to what senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal said after the poll debacle in Bihar. Sibal had claimed that Congress leadership has a "business as usual" mentality and the grand-old party needs a change as people do not consider it an alternative.
On Thursday, in a video statement, Amarinder Singh disagreed and said, "If you are a Congressman, you can go to the party president or the Congress Working Committee with any problem you may have with the party functioning. But you should not go out to air your grievances. If you want to do that, you can leave the party."
No need for leadership change, can't read too much into Bihar poll results, says @capt_amarinder. Rejects charges of @INCIndia lacking inner-party democracy but says differences should be aired within party if you're a Congressman, else you should leave party. pic.twitter.com/xU5hGeR3oo— Raveen Thukral (@RT_MediaAdvPbCM) November 26, 2020
Sibal, one of the 23 senior Congress leaders who had expressed dissatisfaction with the party's leadership in a letter a few months earlier, again raised probing questions after the debacle in the Bihar Assembly election and the bypolls. While Senior leaders P Chidambaram and Ghulam Nabi Azad backed him, Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot publicly slammed Sibal's criticism of the party. In a stinging attack, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury said that those speaking against the party are free to join another party and Salman Khurshid urged the internal critics to look within themselves for flaws.
It must be noted that dissenting voices had risen in Congress party a few months ago against the backdrop of the fight between Sachin Pilot and Ashok Gehlot in Rajasthan. Sibal and Ghulam Nabi Azad had then spoken openly against the Central leadership of the Gandhis. However, interim Congress chief Sonia Gandhi was able to quash the rebellion and had assured party members of reviewing the raised demands.
Congress has been in a leadership dilemma since Rahul Gandhi quit as party chief in the post-Lok Sabha 2019 debacle. This led to a barrage of resignations from various posts. Amidst a lot of turmoil with Priyanka Vadra also being considered, Congress finally went back to their safe option and named Sonia Gandhi as its interim chief. Some loyalists have time and again implored 50-year-old Rahul Gandhi to take back the reins of the party, at a time when the grand old party has lost prominent leaders like Jyotiraditya Scindia, Khushbu Sundar, to BJP.