"7 Weeks Have Passed...": Jyotiraditya Scindia On New Congress Chief

While steering clear of the question if party leaders aged over 70 should be given roles of mentor, Mr Scindia said the focus should be on capabilities.

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The Congress is presently passing through a critical situation, Jyotiraditya Scindia said (File)


Bhopal: 

Highlights

  1. Rahul Gandhi's resignation unimaginable development: Jyotiraditya Scindia
  2. Congress needs to reinvent itself before going back to people, he added
  3. Jyotiraditya Scindia has said he is not in race to be Congress president

Rahul Gandhi's resignation as Congress president was "unimaginable", the party's Jyotiraditya Scindia said on Thursday, emphasising that a leader who can reenergize the grand old party should be chosen as his replacement soon.

"Already seven weeks have passed, the Congress Working Committee (CWC) needs to decide the next president of the party," said Mr Scindia, who quit as general secretary last week.

Rahul Gandhi, who took over as party chief from his mother Sonia Gandhi in 2017, quit on May 25 over the Congress's second straight Lok Sabha defeat, with an abysmal tally of 52 in the 543-member Lok Sabha.

A poster pitching Mr Scindia for the post recently came up outside the Madhya Pradesh Congress headquarters in Bhopal, causing a flutter in the party ranks. The 48-year-old, however, ruled himself out of the race.

"The party is presently passing through a critical situation. Congress needs to revive and reinvent itself before going back to people again for winning their confidence. I think that moment has arrived," he said.

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Amid the growing political crisis in Karnataka and split in the Congress in Goa, Mr Scindia visited Bhopal on Thursday - first time since the party's and his own defeat in the recent Lok Sabha elections.

"I never bat on the back-foot, but always bat on front foot. We respect the people's verdict. Be it me or others, we can't deny that there were shortcomings which led to the results."

On whether leaders over 70 should be mentors and leave the party's running to young leaders, Mr Scindia said the focus should be on capability more than age.

"I'm not Modi-ji, don't divide the country's population into old and young. The need is to focus on individual capabilities instead on age. But with the passage of time, the change needs to happen. There will even be a time when I'll have to go," he said.

Amid the growing political crisis in Karnataka and split in the Congress in Goa, Mr Scindia visited Madhya Pradesh capital Bhopal on Thursday. This is his first visit since he lost from his traditional Guna seat in the state.

Madhya Pradesh is fast becoming another vulnerable spot for the Congress amid a rift between its top leaders, Mr Scindia and Chief Minister Kamal Nath.

"It's long been part and parcel of the BJP's politics to get to power through the back door after failing to win power from the front door. They've been doing so in Madhya Pradesh for six months, but I want to tell them, their dream of toppling our government in MP will always remain Mungeri Lal ke haseen sapne (pipe-dreams)."



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