Home World Business New team, new faces: Rahul Gandhi kicks off much-awaited Congress reshuffle

New team, new faces: Rahul Gandhi kicks off much-awaited Congress reshuffle

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The Congress VP is set to take over the reins of the party following the retirement of Sonia Gandhi

Amit Agnihotri  |  New Delhi  May 1, 2017 Last Updated at 09:36 IST

has kicked off the much-awaited reshuffle, bringing in new faces to manage the grand old party.


The vice-president, set to take over the reins of the party from his mother and chief Sonia Gandhi, has also approved a team, which will oversee the internal elections to be held in the coming months.


Sonia’s tenure will expire in December this year and Rahul is expected to take over as party chief.  Sonia became the chief through internal polls in 1998.


Though Rahul’s upgrade can be done through an executive order and the working committee has already passed a unanimous resolution urging him to take over, the former wants it through a proper route.


There has been intense speculation over the changes in the party, as it lost four of the five states to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the recent  

Tweak time

vice-president is set to take over the reins of the party following the retirement of Sonia Gandhi 

  • He has approved a team to oversee internal elections
  • Over the past week, Rahul replaced office-bearers in charge of party units in Gujarat and Karnataka and Goa and brought in young leaders as secretaries
  • Digvijaya Singh, in-charge of Karnataka and Goa, has been replaced by MP KC Venugopal and A Chella Kumar, respectively
  • Madhusudan Mistry, head of central election committee, has also been replaced 
  • Party lawmaker in Maharashtra Amit Deshmukh is AICC secretary in Goa
  • In Gujarat, Gurudas Kamat has been replaced with former Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot

Over the past week, Rahul has replaced office-bearers in charge of party units in Gujarat and Karnataka and Goa, and brought in young leaders as secretaries.


According to sources, the changes are unlikely to be a one-time exercise and poll-bound states would get the primary attention.


The changes announced relates to veteran Digvijaya Singh, who was in charge of Karnataka and Goa, and Madhusudan Mistry, who was heading the central election committee, which decides candidates for the Assembly and elections.


faced a strong reaction from the state unit as the moved fast to form a government in Goa under his watch despite the emerging as the single largest party. 


While Goa has gone to A Chella Kumar, Singh’s deputy in the state, MP KC Venugopal has replaced Digvijaya in Karnataka, where are due in April next year. 


Party lawmaker in Maharashtra Amit Deshmukh, son of former Union minister Vilasrao Deshmukh, will be the All India Committee’s (AICC) secretary in Goa. 


In Gujarat, where polls will be held this year-end, old-hand Gurudas Kamat has been replaced with former Rajasthan Chief Minister


Karnataka chief G Parameshwara, also the home minister, might be changed, as Rahul plans to revamp the state unit. 


Tweaks are also expected in Himachal Pradesh where polls are due this year-end. 


Rahul is likely to form his own team to face the challenges, especially the next round of Assembly elections in Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh in 2018 where the has been ruling for the past three terms.


Rahul’s aides Lok Saba member Rajeev Satav and Madhya Pradesh legislator Jitu Patwari have been made AICC secretaries in Gujarat, while Manickam Tagore and former MP Madhu Yashki Goud are the new secretaries in Karnataka.


Sources said the changes would be a mix of youth and experience, which means not all seniors stand to lose their positions in the revamp process. 


Digvijaya, who still holds charge of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, said he was loyal to the party and to the Gandhi family. He also thanked party workers in Goa and Karnataka.


Rahul has also addressed the delay in conduct of internal elections as well. 


MP Mullapally Ramachandran heads a panel, which will supervise the party’s internal elections likely to be completed by October.


Earlier, in 2015, Ramachandran had prepared a schedule for internal polls, but the exercise could not be rolled out, as several states had problems with membership lists.

New team, new faces: Rahul Gandhi kicks off much-awaited Congress reshuffle

The Congress VP is set to take over the reins of the party following the retirement of Sonia Gandhi

The Congress VP is set to take over the reins of the party following the retirement of Sonia Gandhi

has kicked off the much-awaited reshuffle, bringing in new faces to manage the grand old party.


The vice-president, set to take over the reins of the party from his mother and chief Sonia Gandhi, has also approved a team, which will oversee the internal elections to be held in the coming months.


Sonia’s tenure will expire in December this year and Rahul is expected to take over as party chief.  Sonia became the chief through internal polls in 1998.


Though Rahul’s upgrade can be done through an executive order and the working committee has already passed a unanimous resolution urging him to take over, the former wants it through a proper route.


There has been intense speculation over the changes in the party, as it lost four of the five states to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the recent  

Tweak time

vice-president is set to take over the reins of the party following the retirement of Sonia Gandhi 

  • He has approved a team to oversee internal elections
  • Over the past week, Rahul replaced office-bearers in charge of party units in Gujarat and Karnataka and Goa and brought in young leaders as secretaries
  • Digvijaya Singh, in-charge of Karnataka and Goa, has been replaced by MP KC Venugopal and A Chella Kumar, respectively
  • Madhusudan Mistry, head of central election committee, has also been replaced 
  • Party lawmaker in Maharashtra Amit Deshmukh is AICC secretary in Goa
  • In Gujarat, Gurudas Kamat has been replaced with former Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot

Over the past week, Rahul has replaced office-bearers in charge of party units in Gujarat and Karnataka and Goa, and brought in young leaders as secretaries.


According to sources, the changes are unlikely to be a one-time exercise and poll-bound states would get the primary attention.


The changes announced relates to veteran Digvijaya Singh, who was in charge of Karnataka and Goa, and Madhusudan Mistry, who was heading the central election committee, which decides candidates for the Assembly and elections.


faced a strong reaction from the state unit as the moved fast to form a government in Goa under his watch despite the emerging as the single largest party. 


While Goa has gone to A Chella Kumar, Singh’s deputy in the state, MP KC Venugopal has replaced Digvijaya in Karnataka, where are due in April next year. 


Party lawmaker in Maharashtra Amit Deshmukh, son of former Union minister Vilasrao Deshmukh, will be the All India Committee’s (AICC) secretary in Goa. 


In Gujarat, where polls will be held this year-end, old-hand Gurudas Kamat has been replaced with former Rajasthan Chief Minister


Karnataka chief G Parameshwara, also the home minister, might be changed, as Rahul plans to revamp the state unit. 


Tweaks are also expected in Himachal Pradesh where polls are due this year-end. 


Rahul is likely to form his own team to face the challenges, especially the next round of Assembly elections in Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh in 2018 where the has been ruling for the past three terms.


Rahul’s aides Lok Saba member Rajeev Satav and Madhya Pradesh legislator Jitu Patwari have been made AICC secretaries in Gujarat, while Manickam Tagore and former MP Madhu Yashki Goud are the new secretaries in Karnataka.


Sources said the changes would be a mix of youth and experience, which means not all seniors stand to lose their positions in the revamp process. 


Digvijaya, who still holds charge of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, said he was loyal to the party and to the Gandhi family. He also thanked party workers in Goa and Karnataka.


Rahul has also addressed the delay in conduct of internal elections as well. 


MP Mullapally Ramachandran heads a panel, which will supervise the party’s internal elections likely to be completed by October.


Earlier, in 2015, Ramachandran had prepared a schedule for internal polls, but the exercise could not be rolled out, as several states had problems with membership lists.


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Amit Agnihotri

Business Standard

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