New Delhi: Shashi Tharoor, a senior Congress leader and one of the party’s most vociferous change advocates, has received approval from Sonia Gandhi to run for president in the next internal elections.
“Anyone is free to contest the Congress presidential poll,” Sonia Gandhi told Shashi Tharoor today. “It’s your call. Elections will be held according to the electoral process,” she added.
Last week, Tharoor was among the leaders who sought “transparency and fairness” in the poll process in a letter to the AICC central election authority. He was also among the leaders who asked that the list of voters be made public.
Tharoor had earlier hinted at running for Congress president. Aside from Tharoor, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot will also contest for the post. The Rajasthan CM will visit Delhi on October 25.
The situation was approved by Sonia Gandhi, the party’s interim president, not long after she saw Shashi Tharoor and a few other individuals upon her return from a medical examination abroad.
Echoing the party’s interim chief, Jairam Ramesh said, “Anybody who wants to contest is free and welcome to do so. This has been the consistent position of the Congress president and Rahul Gandhi. This is an open, democratic and transparent process. Nobody needs anybody’s nod to contest.”
Tharoor stated that the party’s much-needed revival would begin with the election of a new president in an essay for the Malayalam newspaper “Mathrubhumi.”
Rahul Gandhi resigned as the Congress president in 2019, taking responsibility for the party’s second consecutive defeat in the 2019 parliamentary elections.
In the past year, several influential figures have left their positions, including Kapil Sibal, Jaiveer Shergill, Sunil Jakhar, Amarinder Singh, RPN Singh, Ashwani Kumar, and Hardik Patel. Senior leader Ghulam Nabi Azad, whose departure was followed by the majority of the party’s leaders in Jammu and Kashmir, is the most recent name on the list.