Sidhu among 5 PCC chiefs asked to quit after poll debacle | India News

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NEW DELHI: In the wake of the party crashing to disastrous defeat in the five recently held assembly elections, Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Tuesday directed their state chiefs to tender their resignations to facilitate overhaul of the local units.
The unusual step by Sonia to publicly ask state presidents to quit, through a tweet by AICC spokesman Randeep Surjewala, indicated a sense of frustration over the casual attitude of state leaders over the failure, with some like Punjab chief Navjot Sidhu and Uttarakhand veteran Harish Rawat, who was the campaign panel chief, even resorting to a blame-game.
Ganesh Godiyal was appointed Uttarakhand Congress chief in the pre-election reorganisation, while Sidhu was given the top perch after a churn which even led to the ouster of then CM Amarinder Singh. Interestingly, Girish Chodankar was asked to continue as Goa PCC chief after he had resigned earlier. Ajay Kumar Lallu was handpicked by AICC general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, who steered the UP polls.
Lallu told reporters on Tuesday, “I take full responsibility for the party’s loss of face in the assembly elections. As directed, I will resign. We will make fresh efforts and work harder for the upcoming elections.”
Interestingly, after a review meeting of the UP poll debacle on Tuesday, spokesperson Supriya Srinate pointed out that Priyanka started the discussions “by taking up responsibility for the performance”.
What seems to have hit Congress hard is that the office-bearers have not even made the pro forma offer to quit and owned up responsibility for failure, as has been the tradition. The beleaguered leadership, facing criticism from within and outside, risked appearing to have lost control as Sidhu, who was brought in at the instance of Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka, went on to say that he had no reason to quit since Charanjit Singh Channi was declared the CM face. It was seen as a challenge to the party brass. It remains to be seen how the mercurial Sidhu responds to the directive.
Despite encouraging inhouse feedback, Congress plunged to an abject defeat in Uttarakhand, Goa, UP and Manipur, while being swept away from power by AAP in Punjab. Since Thursday’s results, Congress and the Gandhi family have come under attack from outsiders and allies, as also from the dissident group G-23.
The unseemly sight has only extended to states where open infighting has broken out. For a party that went into these polls with high hopes, the outcome and its aftermath have compounded the existential crisis that took grip since the 2019 decimation.



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