Ashwani Kumar on Cong prez polls: Sonia Gandhi has last word in Cong's internal politicstext_fields
New Delhi: According to former Congress leader Ashwani Kumar, Sonia Gandhi holds the last say in the internal politics of the party as seen by the overwhelming victory Mallikarjun Kharge received in his election as party president.
In addition to maintaining that it is because party members will still have a sense of personal allegiance to her, which extends to the family, Kumar said on Wednesday that she is likely to demand such regard as long as she is involved in the party in whatever form.
"That Kharge was her undeclared choice is indisputable notwithstanding vehement denials by the establishment to the contrary. Sonia Gandhi has once again demonstrated her astute political judgment in using elections to demonstrate the family's pre-eminence in the party established over long years of exercise of political patronage," Kumar said in a statement.
The former union minister also lauded Shashi Tharoor for taking on the challenge to contest the top Congress post and said he is no loser.
"The election process is a victory for him. He invested his energy in making a political statement by walking the talk. He has clearly outshone most of his once-upon-a-time colleagues in the G-23 grouping and has positioned himself as a challenger," Kumar said.
The former law minister also said Tharoor has registered his presence on the national scene for the long run, noting that much will depend on how he conducts himself hereon and how the party treats him.
Kumar said Tharoor need not complain about the absence of a level-playing field, which is never the case in a 'David versus Goliath' fight, noting that his tally of over 1,000 votes is a significant pointer.
Asserting that defining ideological battles cannot be captive to personal vanities and animosities, Kumar said, "The Congress needs conscientious dissenters willing and able to hold on to their views.
Mallikarjun Kharge will need to be a consensus builder within the party and remove causes for the alienation of party persons over the years. In this necessary task, he will need the family's support.
With PTI inputs