Hyderabad: Senior Congress leader Salman Khurshid Monday said the party cannot afford to let Rahul Gandhi quit the president's post as it is difficult to replace him.
Gandhi had offered to quit as Congress chief in the May 25 meeting of the party's working committee after the poll debacle.
Asked if Gandhi continuing in his post is the only option forward for the Congress, the former external affairs minister said, "I certainly think so."
The Congress cannot afford to let Rahul who is reportedly firm on not reconsidering his decision quit the post though he had said he is going to be around to "fight the battle", Khurshid said.
"I think there is a lot more to the structure of the party, let us call it inherent and historical, that his presence in control is imperative, it is very difficult, if not impossible, to replace (him)," he told PTI.
The Congress leader added that he respects what Gandhi feels.
"I just equally hope that he will respect how all the workers and followers (who want him to stay in the post) feel. We understand very difficult, complex, psychological decision it must be for him, but I would certainly appeal that he stays and we find solutions to all our problems," he said.
Khurshid had earlier said the Nehru-Gandhi family is the binding force for the party and the largest vote-getter for the outfit.