Cong in Gujarat preparing itself to contest local body polls

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Ahmedabad, Dec 16 (PTI) In a bid to put its house in order after a rout in recently-held Assembly bypolls in Gujarat, the Congress will do the needful to strengthen the party ahead of civic and local body elections, expected to be held in February next year, a spokesperson said on Wednesday.

'Congress' state in-charge Rajiv Satav has indicated that to strengthen the party ahead of local body polls, whatever is required will be done,' the party spokesperson Manish Doshi said.

Another Congress leader said Satav also 'indicated' to replace incumbent state unit president Amit Chavda and Leader of Opposition Paresh Dhanani 'to strengthen the party'.

According to sources in the Congress, Chavda and Dhanani had put in their papers after the Congress drew a blank against the ruling BJP in the bypolls held on eight Assembly constituencies last month.

'The Central leadership is yet to accept their resignations,' they said.

Both Chavda and Dhanani were unavailable for comments.

Speaking on the preparations being done by the Congress to contest the upcoming elections to local bodies, Doshi said, 'the exercise to strengthen the party from the district level to the state level is being undertaken'.

Byelections were held in the state after eight MLAs of the Congress had resigned ahead of the Rajya Sabha elections held in June this year.

Elections to six municipal corporations, including Ahmedabad, 55 municipalities, 31 district panchayats and 231 taluka pachayats were supposed to be held last month as their five-year terms would end this month.

The elections were postponed by three months in view of the COVID-19 pandemic. PTI PD NSK NSK