New Delhi [India], December 19 (ANI): Rahul Gandhi's leadership is necessary for Congress to move forward and the party will organise a 'Chintan Shivir' soon to discuss the challenges before the party, Congress leaders said on Saturday after a meeting held at Congress president Sonia Gandhi's residence which was also attended by some of the 23 leaders who had called for sweeping changes in the party.
Speaking to the media after a five-hour-long meeting, former union minister Pawan Bansal said the leaders said the party needs the leadership of Rahul Gandhi.
"Everyone said that the party needs Rahul Gandhi's leadership and we should not care for those who want to divert attention from the agenda. A total of 19 leaders including Sonia Gandhi were present in the meeting. Sonia Gandhi told Congress like a family and said that we will work together as a family," Bansal said.
He said leaders present at the meeting openly stated their point of view and party has initiated the process for the election of party president.
Asked if any party leader raised questions regarding the leadership of Rahul Gandhi, Bansal said, "no leader criticized Rahul Gandhi in the meeting and everyone supported him."
Six out of 23 leaders, who wrote the letter to Sonia Gandhi seeking sweeping changes including "full-time and active" leadership and organizational elections, were also present at the meeting.
Prithviraj Chavan, who was one of the senior leaders who wrote to Congress matriarch, addressed the media after the meeting and said the party will organise a 'Chintan Shivir' soon to discuss the challenges and party's future strategy.
He said the meeting was held in a positive atmosphere and there will be more such meetings.
"There will also be a Chintan Shivir like Panchmarhi and Shimla," Chavan said.
He said that party leaders will sit together during Chintan Shivir and give their suggestions to strengthen the party and discuss the way ahead.
"Everything will be deliberated during the Chintan Shivir. Working committee meetings will now be regular. There was some problem due to coronavirus," Chauhan added.
Apart from Sonia Gandhi, the meeting was attended by Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, AK Antony, Ambika Soni, P Chidambaram, Ashok Gehlot, Kamal Nath, Bhakta Charan Das, Pawan Bansal, Ajay Maken, Harish Rawat, Ghulam Nabi Azad, Manish Tiwari, Prithviraj Chavan, Vivek Tankha, Bhupendra Singh Hooda, Shashi Tharoor and Anand Sharma. (ANI)