To Strengthen Party: Why Kharge Running For Congress President Post

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By: Anand Singh | NEW DELHI
Updated: October 2, 2022 15:56
Mallikarjun Kharge started his election campaign on the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi and Lal Bahadur Shastri

Two days after Mallikarjun Kharge filed his papers to contest elections for Congress president, the veteran leader on Sunday said that he had entered the race not to oppose anyone but to strengthen the party.

Kharge launched his campaign on the 153rd birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, a day after his rival and fellow senior leader, Shashi Tharoor, started his campaign.

Kharge, who is said to be the choice of the Gandhi family, even quit as the leader of the opposition in the Rajya Sabha on Saturday – following the party’s ‘one man, one post’ rule.


“The day I filed my nomination, I gave my resignation from my post, aligning with the ‘One Person, One Post’ decision taken in Udaipur. I officially begin my campaign for the post of Congress party president today,” he said, speaking to the media at his residence.

Clarifying his stand on running for party president, Kharge stated, “I have not entered the Congress presidential polls to oppose anyone, but to strengthen the party.”

“As Rahul Gandhi, Sonia Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi didn’t want to contest the elections, I was asked by my senior colleagues to fight the elections. I’m not fighting against anyone. I’m fighting for the ideology of the Congress party,” the octogenarian said.

He further said that he was starting his election campaign on the birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi and Lal Bahadur Shastri.

Meanwhile, three party leaders have quit as spokespersons to campaign for Kharge.

“I, Deepender S Hooda and Syed Naseer Hussain resign from the posts of official spokesperson to campaign for Khargeji. We want this election to be free and fair,” Gourav Vallabh said.

Congress is witnessing an election for the top post after a gap of 21 years. Sonia Gandhi was the party chief for 18 years on the trot, from 2000 to 2017.

In 2017, Rahul Gandhi became the president but quit after the Congress copped a humiliating drubbing in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. Since then, Sonia has been holding the post of interim Congress chief.

As per the election schedule, the last date of withdrawal is October 8. The date of the election (if needed) is October 17 (Monday) from 10 am to 4 pm. The counting and declaration of results (if needed) will happen on October 19.

Besides Kharge and Tharoor, Jharkhand Congress leader KN Tripathi has also filed his nomination. However, his nomination was rejected after scrutiny on Saturday.


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