rediff.com

NewsApp (Free)

Read news as it happens
Download NewsApp

Available on  

Rediff News  All News 
Rediff.com  » News » Inside the latest power debate in Congress

Inside the latest power debate in Congress

Last updated on: April 3, 2013 02:33 IST

Inside the latest power debate in Congress

     Next

Next
Renu Mittal

While the likes of AICC General Secretary Digvijaya Singh strongly root for ending the Congress party's twin power centre formula and projecting Rahul Gandhi as the next prime minister, there are others who feel that this is the ideal path to follow. Renu Mittal reports

A sharp divide has surfaced within the Congress party over whether there should be two power centres in the party and the government or whether the Congress should go back to the model adopted by Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi where the two powerful leaders held the post of both party president and prime minister.

While All India Congress Committee General Secretary Digvijaya Singh made a strong pitch for Rahul Gandhi to become the prime minister, stating that the two power centres model has not been very successful and that the person who becomes the prime minister must have the political authority to act and take decisions.

Digvijaya said he hoped Rahul would not opt to make someone else the prime minister.

Interestingly, over a week later, chief Congress spokesman and AICC media chairman Janardhan Dwivedi reacted sharply and unambiguously contradicted Digvijaya.

Click on NEXT to read further...




     Next

Inside the latest power debate in Congress

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

Dwivedi said that in the last 9 years, the manner in which Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh have operated is unparalleled and that in a democracy this model is ideal for the future.

He said that normally some tension or unease is witnessed either visibly or invisibly, but in this case both the party and the government have been co-existing without any problems or stress.

He said that at the time when Rahul was made the vice president at the Jaipur Chintan Shivir he had made it very clear that his priority is to strengthen the party organization and what happens after that will be decided by the party.

Dwivedi said that in a democracy, political parties put forward their programmes, go to the people, contest elections and then it is the party which elects its leader who becomes the prime minister. He said the same process will be followed this time also.

He also dispelled the ongoing speculation that Manmohan Singh may be headed for a third term as prime minister. Referring to the prime minister's press conference onboard his special aircraft after his Durban trip, Dwivedi said that the question and the answer were not correctly understood by the media.

Being active in politics does not only mean being the prime minister, he said.

Click on NEXT to read further...



Tags:

Prev     Next

Inside the latest power debate in Congress

Prev     Next
Prev

Next

A large section is interpreting Dwivedi's comments as meaning that Rahul will not be declared prime minister before the election. However, party sources say that since the prime ministership will depend on the numbers which the Congress and the United Progressive Alliance gets in the next general elections, this makes sense. 

Sources say the party does not want to face the embarrassment of projecting Rahul Gandhi as prime minister, only to find that it does not have the numbers to form the government.

If the leadership was so keen to reject Digvijaya's formulation, it would not have taken one week to contradict him, but would have been immediately done, said a senior leader.

Sources say that what Digvijaya implied was that the experiment launched by Sonia had been unsuccessful and that there should not have been 2 power centres.

It is no secret that Sonia has been the boss all this time and the writ of the Congress president has run even in the government on most occasions, except of course over the nuclear deal where she was bulldozed by Dr Singh into agreeing to the Indo-US civilian nuclear deal

Within the party there is a growing clamour to make Rahul the prime minister with leaders publicly saying the time had come to jettison Dr Singh who was being seen as a leader with an expiry date for the Congress. But Dr Singh appears to be keen at another shot at the prime ministership, even as the Congress is playing it cool, refusing to look desperate. 

Click on NEXT to go further...



Tags:

Prev     Next

TOP photo features of the week

Prev     More

Click on MORE to see another set of PHOTO features...



Tags:

Prev     More