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'Sonia's Lackeys Preferred, Conspiracy Against Rahul': Sanjay Nirupam Sees Bleak Future for Cong


Last Updated: October 04, 2019, 17:45 IST

'Sonia's Lackeys Preferred, Conspiracy Against Rahul': Sanjay Nirupam Sees Bleak Future for Cong

Former Mumbai chief said that the problems in the party will cost them in the future and it will also lose its deposit on October 24, the day when the results of the Maharashtra polls will be announced.

New Delhi: The crisis within the Congress came to a head on Friday with the party's former Mumbai chief Sanjay Nirupam alleging a conspiracy against former president Rahul Gandhi. "There is a conspiracy against Rahul Gandhi...people working closely with Sonia Gandhi are showing bias," he said.

The fissures in the party have been deepening with several of its leaders, including Nirupam and Ashok Tanwar, raising issues with the distribution of tickets for the Maharashtra and Haryana polls respectively.

"Congress' hierarchy structure is extremely faulty and will cause the party more problems in the future," Nirupam pointed out and added, "On October 24 we will lose our deposit. That will be our fate after elections."

Giving an instance of this apparent malaise in the power structure, Nirupam said that whatever a leader like Bhupinder Hooda says is heard but other Haryana leaders are neglected. "There are leaders who are working under Sonia Gandhi, who have now become lackeys and they are the ones who are being preferred," he said.

Nirupam said the party is no longer taking feedback from the grassroot level and had made the "AICC general secretary in charge of the state all-powerful".

A miffed Nirupam, who had announced on Thursday that he would not campaign for the party in the Assembly polls scheduled for October 21, said the leadership was "sidelining" him though he had served as Mumbai unit president for four years.

Nirupam, who was removed as Mumbai Congress president ahead of the Lok Sabha polls, said his views had not been considered during ticket distribution for the Assembly polls.

"I have been given no role in the Assembly poll process. My views have not been considered during (Assembly) ticket distribution in my own Lok Sabha constituency. There is no respect for me, though I was Mumbai unit president for four years," he said.

Attacking the Congress leadership, he said there was a "systematic fault" in the party, adding that "process of getting parallel feedback from the grassroot (workers) has been scrapped".

"The decision of the AICC general secretary in charge of the state is final. The AICC general secretary has been made all powerful. He can be biased too," he said.

Nirupam said he had given one name for the Versova Assembly constituency, part of the Mumbai North West LS seat from which he lost by a margin of 2.6 lakh votes, and that had not been considered.

"The name (Baldev Khosa) finalised by the party is of one who came third in the 2014 Assembly polls and has been inactive for the last five years," he said.

"The BJP is so aggressive in its campaign and we need to pick candidates who can match the aggression," he said.

Nirupam is known to wield considerable influence in Mumbai North and had even unsuccessfully contested the 2014 elections from the constituency. He was replaced as the city Congress chief ahead of the Lok Sabha polls in March following complaints by a section of party leaders that he functioned in a "unilateral" manner.

Former Union minister Milind Deora had replaced Nirupam. However, Deora had resigned from the post last month following the party's debacle in the general elections.

The Congress has been embroiled with infighting in its party units across several states, including Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh. The party's ranks in Madhya Pradesh have been witnessing a power struggle between former Chief Minister Digvijaya Singh, incumbent Chief Minsiter Kamal Nath and Jyotiraditya Scindia. Whereas in Rajasthan, the tussles between Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot have kept the party on tenterhooks.

(With inputs from PTI)

first published:October 04, 2019, 12:25 IST
last updated:October 04, 2019, 17:45 IST