India Today
Rahul Gandhi Image Credit: India Today
Rahul Gandhi Image Credit: India Today

Can The Congress Heal Itself?

After its rout in the 2019 Lok Sabha Election and then Rahul Gandhi’s resignation, the Congress has slipped into a deep coma. It will take nothing short of shock therapy for the party to emerge from this stupor

Kaushik Deka

On July 3, in a four-page letter posted on Twitter, Rahul Gandhi declared that he had resigned as Congress president. Ten days later, a statement issued by All India Congress Committee (AICC) general secretary (organisation) K.C. Venugopal announced that the ‘honourable Congress president’ had approved the proposal for the appointment of the president and working presidents of the Maharashtra Congress Committee. Unlike in the past, where such appointment letters categorically said Congress president Rahul Gandhi, this note did not mention the name of the ‘honourable Congress president’.

Who, then, is the Congress president?

Who approved these appointments? When asked, Congress communication in-charge Randeep Singh Surjewala told India today: “Rahul Gandhi continues to be the president of the party as the party has not accepted his resignation. These appointments were approved by Rahul Gandhi.” So, confusion reigns and it appears Rahul is still unofficially in charge.

It’s this kind of rudderlessness that has brought the party to its current pass in Indian electoral politics—it has just 52 representatives in the 543-member Lok Sabha and is in power in only six out of 29 states—Punjab, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka and Puducherry—accounting for 838 members of


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