NEW DELHI: A high-level meeting of senior Congress leaders was held at the residence of party’s interim chief Sonia Gandhi here to discuss its recent poll debacle and induction of election strategist Prashant Kishor among many other crucial issues.
Senior Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi, Mallikarjun Kharge, Ambika Soni, Digvijiya Singh, Ajay Maken, and KC Venugopal attended the meeting. Kishor was also present in the meeting, a source told The New Indian.
Describing the meeting as “urgent” in nature, a party source said that the meeting has been called to discuss the party’s rout in five states as well as to take a decision on ‘chintan shivir’ (brainstorming session) besides the issue of Kishor’s entry.
Speaking to the media before the huddle, Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha, Kharge said, “I have no idea about the agenda of the meeting. I was in Bengaluru and had come for the urgent meeting called by Sonia Gandhi.”
It is speculated that Kishor, who was in talks with Congress leadership for induction in 2020, can be given important role in Gujarat, where the assembly elections are due later this year.
Another party source said that his induction in 2020 could not materialise and now he can be given the role of the strategist ahead of Gujarat assembly polls, where the party came closer to BJP’s numbers in 2017 assembly polls.
Since last year, Kishor had been critical of the Congress leadership. During the Lakhimpur Kheri violence in October last year, when party general secretary and Uttar Pradesh in-charge Priyanka Gandhi was detained on her way to the violence site, Kishor, taking a jibe at the party, had said that there was “no quick fix solutions” to revive the grand old party.
“People looking for a quick, spontaneous revival of GOP led opposition based on Lakhimpur Kheri incident are setting themselves up for a big disappointment. Unfortunately there are no quick fix solutions to the deep-rooted problems and structural weakness of GOP,” he had tweeted.
In December, he once again targeted the Congress in a tweet: “The IDEA and SPACE that Congress represents is vital for a strong opposition. But Congress’ leadership is not the DIVINE RIGHT of an individual especially, when the party has lost more than 90% elections in last 10 years. Let opposition leadership be decided Democratically.”