Meeting of senior Congress leaders sets off speculation amid dissidence

Meeting of senior Congress leaders sets off speculation amid dissidence

NEW DELHI: A meeting of senior Congress leaders and then a veteran’s visit to the party brass, all in the space of two days, has set off speculation in the party in the wake of dissidence and a desperate search for a solution to party squabbles.
Sources said some Congress leaders including senior leaders met at the residence of former MP chief minister Kamal Nath on Monday. The group included members of G-23 who triggered a row by writing a letter to the party leadership lamenting the drift in the organisation and demanding serious reforms including elections to the post of the party president and the CWC.
At the same time, Nath on Tuesday visited 10 Janpath. It is not clear if he met Congress chief Sonia Gandhi or Rahul Gandhi. The buzz is that the Congress chief is back from Goa and he may have met her.
Either way, the meeting on Monday and then Nath’s visit to the party brass a day later resulted in Congress members trying to join the dots on what it means and if there was anything cooking.
What is a fact is that at the CWC meeting to pay homage to late veteran Ahmed Patel, there were strong calls for unity in the party. Priyanka Gandhi Vadra too joined the chorus as she said the party should be united in its future endeavours. Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot among others pushed for unity in the party, while veteran Anand Sharma, who is a signatory to the controversial letter, too spoke in the same vein.
In coming days, it may become clear as to the direction the party may take — whether dissidence will pick up or there would be a closing of ranks.
What is underlined by the party insiders is that late Patel was the mediator between the dissidents and the leadership. In his absence, the party may be hard pressed to find a senior member who can reach out to factions to mediate.

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