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The Economic Times

ET View: Congress dumps Rahul Gandhi

No Gandhi to follow him, said Rahul. You don’t decide that, said the CWC.
Sonia Gandhi’s election as Congress interim president signals defeat of Rahul Gandhi’s attempt to retain control of the party by appointing a pliant nominee as president, even as he occupies a higher ground, free from the pollution of dynasty and filled with the lush greenery of moral responsibility for failure, in whose thicket no one would hopefully notice his occasional bouts of absence from the country.

Sonia Gandhi values counsel, and patient survival informs her action, rather than impetuous entitlement. This means that the Congress Old Guard have regained control of the party, after Rahul Gandhi took it over and made a hash of things. Navjyot Singh Sidhu and Alpesh Thakore, Rahul’s blue-eyed boys, have quit, and other Rahul favourites have demonstrated their innocence of Congress history or values in their public reactions to the scrapping of Article 370.

Yet, Rahul Gandhi tried to manipulate the process of choosing his successor by proposing wider consultations within the party, with leaders whom he had appointed, before the CWC took a final call. This has been rejected. No Gandhi to follow him, said Rahul. You don’t decide that, said the CWC. It appointed Sonia Gandhi as interim president with indefinite tenure to shut Rahul Gandhi up. Why did Sonia play along? In the hope that some Gandhi stands a chance of regaining leadership of the party, somewhere down the line, probably.
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