These 23 Congress dissenters wrote to Sonia, seeking ‘sweeping changes’ in party
The letter which set storm within the party included signatories as Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha, 5 former CMs, sitting MPs and more than 10 former Union Ministers with decades of political experience.
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New Delhi: Rarely in Congress history, Gandhis have been questioned or doubted in leading the party. But, in an unprecedented move in the history of Congress, 23 senior leaders wrote to Sonia Gandhi before CWC meet, demanding sweeping change in the party structure and leadership.
The five-page letter drafted by two senior leaders and then discussed and signed by others though didn’t openly criticize either Sonia Gandhi or Rahul Gandhi but it is being seen as a distrust against the party high command, especially Rahul Gandhi.
The letter has set storm within the party as the signatories include Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha, 5 former Chief Ministers, sitting MPs like Shashi Tharoor and Manish Tewari and more than 10 former Union Ministers with decades of political experience.
Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha
Ghulam Nabi Azad, one of the signatories to the letter, is the leader of opposition in Rajya Sabha. He has been close to the Gandhis and seen as a core member of party leadership. He also led the party successfully in the 2002 Assembly election in Jammu and Kashmir.
Former Chief Ministers
5 ex-Chief Ministers who have signed the letter are:
Bhupinder Singh Hooda: was CM of Haryana twice
Rajender Kaur Bhattal: was CM of Punjab
Prithviraj Chavan: was CM of Maharashtra
M Veerappa Moily: was CM of Karnataka
Ghulam Nabi Aazd: was CM of Jammu and Kashmir
Sitting MPs & former Union Ministers who wrote Letter of Dissent
-MP Vivek Tankha;
-Mukul Wasnik and
-P J Kurian,
-Raj Babbar (UP)
-Arvinder Singh Lovely (Delhi) and
-Kaul Singh Thakur (Himachal)
-Akhilesh Prasad Singh
-MP Sandeep Dixit
Meanwhile, the CWC meet started on a stormy note, with Rahul Gandhi slamming the ‘seniors’ for questioning Sonia’s leadership during crisis. He claimed that the letter by dissenters was nothing less than ‘collusion with BJP’, something which left party veterans infuriated. Kapil Sibal and Ghulam Nabi Azad took strong objection to it and gave it back to the party high command.