Taking the fight to critics of the Gandhi family within the Congress party, Congress President Sonia Gandhi said that she had always appreciated frankness and criticism and that there was no need for detractors to speak to her via the media. At the meeting of the Congress Working Committee, she made references to the 'G-23' group which has been calling for an internal overhaul of the Congress party through letters and releases to the press.
Miss Gandhi referred to herself as a 'hands-on President' who worked full-time on issues of national and party importance. She cited her involvement in the farmer's protests, relief work and providing aid during the time of the pandemic, as well as numerous instances where she had worked to highlight atrocities against marginalized groups.
"You are aware that I have been taking them up with the Prime Minister, as have Dr Manmohan Singh ji and Rahul (Gandhi) ji... I have been interacting with like-minded political parties regularly. We have issued joint statements on national issues and coordinated our strategy in Parliament as well," she said.
In the official statement released by Congress, Sonia Gandhi also discussed issues such as economic worries, changes in India's vaccine procurement policy and the recent violence at Lakhimpur Kheri.
"The only answer the Government seems to have for economic recovery is selling off national assets built with great effort over the decades...Meanwhile, prices of essential commodities - food and fuel included - continue to rise unabated. Could anyone in the country ever imagine that petrol prices would be over 100 rupees a litre, diesel would be nearing the 100 rupees a litre mark, a gas cylinder would cost 900 rupees and cooking oil would be 200 rupees a litre. This is making life unbearable for people across the country," her statement reads.
Calling for a free and honest discussion about the party leadership, Sonia Gandhi warned detractors that leaking decisions and party information to the media would not be tolerated.