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“Congress is the only party which can provide peace and stability to the state.”

- Sonia Gandhi

Does this stand true today? - Even though Sonia Gandhi does remain the party Chief, the events that led up to the meet on Monday don’t seem as convincing.

Let’s go back to the very beginning and root cause - this all started when 23 senior leaders of the Congress, including Shashi Tharoor, Ghulam Nabi Azad, wrote a letter to Sonia Gandhi and called for an entire change - from top to bottom. Explicitly acknowledging the youth’s support for BJP, the letter focuses on making it clear that losing support at the base level and losing confidence from the youth is a serious issue. This letter was sent out around a fortnight ago, and merely shows us the problems and disparities present amongst their own party members.

She received new endorsement only yesterday from the Congress, and started by saying that she was looking for "a full-time, visible leadership”. But, after the discussion, the entire committee decided to continue with her as their party chief. She also put out a fair warning and a stern message saying that "no one will be permitted to undermine or weaken the party and its leadership at this juncture”. Though she was visibly shaken by this letter, she was reported saying that she had nothing against her colleagues and that they were only looking out for the party.

Manmohan Singh, former Prime Minister moved a resolution asking Sonia Gandhi to stay Chief at least until the AICC meet in about six months. Surprisingly, several other Congress leaders also stated that if Sonia Gandhi did not wish to continue, then Rahul Gandhi should take up the post which he had quit over last year’s elections defeat. This subtly does show the stronghold the Gandhis have on the party itself.

But, back to the meet, once Sonia Gandhi addressed the members, and conveyed her wish to resign from that post, began the routine praise of her and reasons for why she had to stay as the party Chief. Rahul Gandhi felt it necessary and accused the letter writers, and the signatories if it while questioning the basic intent of it. He further added to that by condemning this move while Congress was at its ‘weakest’ point (Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan crisis along with Sonia Gandhi being in the hospital).

But, what’s the most surprising thing, is the fact that Rahul Gandhi even went to the extent of stating that the letter writers had colluded with the BJP, which led to a massive backlash. Leaders like Kapil Sibal shot off incessant tweets, which after clarification from Rahul Gandhi was deleted. Kapil Sibal meekly stated that he had been informed by Rahul Gandhi that none of that was ever “attributed’ to him, and therefore he had taken back his tweet.

Sources do state that the letter writers never intended any harm or any internal conflict. Upon Rahul Gandhi’s remarks, they said they’d even leave the party or face any punishment to prove their basic loyalty towards the Congress, following which there was a small backlash. They were quoted saying that "You can disagree with issues but cannot doubt our intent in any way.” Mr Azad was quoted saying that he was content with the outcome of the meeting.

As cliche as it may sound, harmony amongst a party policy is always necessary. Though arguments and difference of opinions are encouraged, calling out fellow members on social media platforms only serves to show the disparity between the leaders themselves. The only option we, as common people have, is to wait and watch.

Reporter: Kruthika Senthil Kumar

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