Ashok Gehlot to take over as Congress president: Report

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot is likely to take over as the Congress president and an announcement to this effect would be made soon, says a Navbharat Times report.

Rahul Gandhi, who resigned as the Congress chief in the wake of crushing defeat in Lok Sabha polls, has refused to reconsider his decision and take back his resignation even after having been beseeched by the Congress rank and file.

Ashok Gehlot (File Photo)

The Gandhi scion has also clarified that his sister, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, who was made in-charge of the East Uttar Pradesh during the Lok Sabha elections, is not in the reckoning to take over as the president of the party.

Rahul has been the target of stinging barbs from leaders of the ruling party, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi. These politicians miss no opportunity to deride the Gandhis for ‘perpetuating dynastic politics’.

In order to negate the criticism of Congress being the dynastic party, he wants a non-Gandhi to become the party president.

The Navbharat Times report claims that Congress leader Sachin Pilot will take over as the chief minister of Rajasthan after Gehlot is anointed as the party president. Political experts see this as an attempt to mitigate the prevalent tensions between the two.

Gehlot, a three-time chief minister, is considered close to the Gandhi family and was credited for the Congress’s good performance in the 2017 Gujarat elections.

However, it is yet to be determined whether Gehlot alone would be the party president or will there be two or three working presidents, with overall control of the party still resting with the Gandhi family.