The Congress party came out on Tuesday to deny speculation that Congress Delhi chief Ajay Maken had tendered his resignation.
The party issued a statement saying that Maken, who had led the party's campaign in the disastrous 2015 Delhi assembly elections where it managed to win not a single seat, had gone abroad seeking treatment for some health-related issues and had informed Congress president Rahul Gandhi of the same.
"Delhi Congress President Ajay Maken has not resigned. He has some health issues and has gone for a check-up. He will be back soon. He had recently met party President Rahul Gandhi and party in charge of Delhi affairs PC Chacko."
However, sources have said to Republic TV that there may be more to the matter. According to inputs, the real reason behind Maken's unhappiness stems from the decision of sharing a stage with Aam Aadmi Party leaders over the Opposition's call for a Bharat Bandh over high prevailing fuel prices on September 10. Following this, Ajay Maken had tendered his resignation on September 13 citing health reasons, but the resignation wasn't accepted. As per sources, the Congress is attempting to limit damage over the matter and back-door talks with Maken are in progress. He had apparently departed the country on Saturday and will return on Friday.
This is the third case of internal strife within the Congress party to come to the fore within just a space of 24 hours. In Mumbai, local leaders of the Congress party have met with senior party leader Mallikarjun Kharge seeking the removal of Sanjay Nirupam from his position as Congress Mumbai chief and for the installation of Milind Deora in his place. The reason for this, as stated by Congress MLA Amin Patel, was that the party needed a young face in Mumbai, who can unite the different factions within the party.
In light of this, Sanjay Nirupam, who has courted enormous controversy of late on account of his actions during the fuel-price 'Bharat Bandh' call and his remarks about PM Modi, said, "I am Rahul Gandhi loyalist. I was appointed to this post by Rahul Gandhi. He gave me the orders to fight for the citizens of Mumbai and improve the working of Congress in the city. Since the past three years, I have been on the streets every other day for the questions posed by the people of Mumbai. And I will keep on doing it till the time I am the chief of Mumbai Congress. And till what time will I stay, the Congress President shall decide that, and no one else."
Meanwhile, Rahul Gandhi is also facing infighting in Karnataka as a rift appears to have broken out with former Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah and MLA Zameer Ahmed on one side and current Karnataka deputy CM G Parameshwara on the other over the latter allegedly siding with current CM HD Kumaraswamy and sidelining Congress leaders.