The former union minister and current Thiruvananthapuram MP said that the party needs youth to take up the leadership, but clarified that he was not aiming to become the party chief.

We had no one to lead when MLAs were leaving party in Goa Karnataka Shashi Tharoor
news Politics Monday, July 29, 2019 - 13:54

The Congress is facing one of the worst crises in its history with its president Rahul Gandhi stepping down post the Lok Sabha election debacle.

Adding to its woes, the party’s coalition government lost power in Karnataka and in Goa, a majority of its MLAs have joined the BJP.

Shashi Tharoor, one of the party’s prominent national figures, has spoken up on the uncertainty over choosing a new leader saying that the election for the top post should be done in a democratic way by opening it up to all delegates of the Pradesh Congress Committees.

Speaking to Asianet News, the former union minister and current Thiruvananthapuram MP candidly admitted that he was disappointed over the delay in picking a new leader.

“I am sad that none of the leaders’ names have been suggested for the post of president. At first we all wanted Rahul Gandhi to revoke his decision and come back. But our party could have taken a decision with reasonable speed after he declared that he won’t come back,” Tharoor said.

“Several MLAs left us in Karnataka, in Goa out of the 23 MLAs 18, including even the Opposition leader, have left us. Our situation was not having a president either to prevent or to give direction when all this was happening. How many weeks more can this be tolerated like this, will they (the BJP) try this in Madhya Pradesh or in Rajasthan. In my opinion, we shouldn’t wait for that to happen; we urgently need a leader who is brave and strong enough,” Tharoor said.

He also said that all PCC delegates should be given an opportunity to contest for the post.

“There is a delegate list in Pradesh Congress Committees, around 10,000 people would be on the list. In my opinion, opportunity should be given to all those who are interested, able and experienced from all age groups – though who we need in the current situation are the youth – for an open competition. What we need is a leader who will enthuse the party workers. I am not talking against the Gandhi family, it would be fair if Priyanka Gandhi also contests,” he said.

Tharoor, however, made it clear that becoming the party president was not his ambition.

“I also believe that it’s time for the youth to take up the leadership, there are people who are below 40 or 50 but who have been working in the party for 15-20 years. I am not talking about me. I know my abilities as well as my limitations. Those who are 20 years younger than me have more experience in the party than me. I am aware that I have limitations in leading the organisation, I don’t want to become the president, that is not my ambition,” the leader said.



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