Sonia asks MP in-charge to submit report over state crisis

The party source further said that Gandhi is also holding talks with the senior party leaders over the issue of appointing new party unit chief in the state.
Sonia Gandhi
Sonia Gandhi Congress Prez

New Delhi, Sep 6 (IANS) Miffed over the infighting among party leaders and many party leaders openly telling the media that senior party leader Jyotiraditya Scindia be made the state unit chief, Congress’ interim President Sonia Gandhi has sought a report from state in-charge Deepak Babaria over the issue, party sources said.

According to senior party sources, Gandhi has asked Babaria to prepare a report over the leaders openly criticising the state government over the issue of illegal mining and venting their anger in media over the issue of new state unit chief and demanding that the post go to Scindia.

Sensing the crisis in the state Congress snowballing into a full-fledged war between the Scindia faction and the rest, she will decide on the new state unit chief in the coming days, the source said.

Babaria has been asked to submit the report, within 10 days, after speaking to the Ministers, MLAs and the party leaders in the state.

The party source further said that Gandhi is also holding talks with the senior party leaders over the issue of appointing new party unit chief in the state.

Earlier this week, Scindia once again sounded a discordant note with his party and said that the Kamal Nath administration should listen to his ministers instead of allowing interference from outside.

The Congress stalwart had made the remarks while coming in support of state minister Umang Singhar, who has hit out at senior party leader and former Chief Minister Digvijaya Singh and accused him of running a proxy government in the state.

Scindia had also admitted that there are “differences” between the Kamal Nath government and several Congress leaders.

“It is after 15 years and extreme hard work that the Congress party has come to power in Madhya Pradesh and it has been only six months.

“Several Congress leaders have high hopes and are expecting development from the party and the administration. There are differences and the government should sit and sort these out,” he said.

Scindia has been battling for the party’s top post in Madhya Pradesh which is currently held by Nath.

But to a question over the new state unit chief, Scindia said: “Sonia Gandhi will decide on the next Madhya Pradesh unit president and it would be acceptable to all.”

The post of Madhya Pradesh unit chief has been witnessing a tripartite backdoor contest with differences in the party cadre surfacing almost every day. The issue, however, gained momentum after several party workers wrote to Gandhi demanding Scindia be made the state chief. Speculations are rife that Digvijaya Singh has been opposing Scindia’s candidature as state unit head.

Late last year, Scindia was in the race for Chief Minister when the party won the Assembly election defeating the BJP. However, the then Congress President Rahul Gandhi named long-time loyalist Nath for the top post. Scindia earlier this year was handed over the responsibility of Uttar Pradesh West in-charge ahead of the Lok Sabha elections.

Last month, Sonia Gandhi made Scindia the chairman of the screening committee of Maharastra, where the assembly polls are scheduled later this year.

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