Senior Congress leader Digvijaya Singh maintained on Friday that party President Sonia Gandhi has not interfered in the functioning of the government even once and that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was the "power centre in governance."
Singh made this remark while seeking to clarify the "perception" of two power centres which came into focus after his recent comments that this model had not worked very well.
"There has to be one power centre and here the power centre is Dr Manmohan Singh in governance and for political matters it is of course Mrs Sonia Gandhi," the All India Congress Committee General Secretary told NDTV.
"Both are working separately in their own domain, Dr Manmohan Singh takes all decisions in the Government of India, and Mrs Sonia Gandhi takes all decisions in organisation," he added.
Seeking to explain the context of his earlier remarks that triggered a controversy, Singh said that because of the media hype and opposition allegations there is a general perception among bureaucracy and all forms of government that there are dual power centres. "This is a perception created by media that there are dual power centres, perception created by the Opposition, frankly the Congress president has never interfered in the functioning of the government not once," he said.
Singh said the Congress president has suggested policies like the Right to Information Act and National Rural Employment Guarantee Act programme, which is as per the party's election manifesto and the common minimum programme.
"But, she has never interfered in the functioning of the government, so this perception is wrong," he added.
Singh had earlier said, "Personally, I feel that this model (of having two power centres) hasn't worked very well. Because, I personally feel that there should not be two power centres and I think whoever is the prime minister must have the authority to function although Sonia Gandhi has really never interfered in the functioning of the government."
Dr Singh, when asked about the issue of two power centres coming into focus had curtly replied, "It is a useless debate. It is a creation of the media."
Congress spokesman Janardan Dwivedi while rejecting Singh's assessment had said, "The relationship which exists between Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today is unique and something which has never been seen before. This could be an ideal arrangement for the future."