Shashi Tharoor is in a tight election race with Congress veteran Mallikarjun Kharge for the position of All India Congress Committee (AICC) chief.
Lok Sabha MP and Congress leader Shashi Tharoor on Sunday that he would be open to the idea of a public debate between the party president candidates because it would spark interest in the party similar to the recent British Conservative Party leadership contest. Tharoor is in a tight election race with Congress veteran Mallikarjun Kharge for the position of All India Congress Committee (AICC) chief.
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Tharoor also said the Nehru-Gandhi family has held and will always hold a special place in the hearts of Congress party members.
Meanwhile, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said that while Tharoor belongs to the 'elite class', Kharge has the experience to strengthen the party and would emerge as a clear winner. “Kharge has a long political experience. He has a clean heart, he comes from the Dalit community and is being welcomed everywhere,” he told reporters after paying tributes to Mahatma Gandhi at the secretariat.
Gehlot, in a veiled attack on Sachin Pilot, also said it should be looked into as to why there was resentment among MLAs over the name of a new chief minister in the state.
Veteran Congress leader Mallikarjun, who is also a front runner for the upcoming party president polls, on Sunday said that he has not entered elections to oppose anyone but to strengthen party. He also said, "In line with 'one person, one post' principle, I resigned as the Leader of Opposition in Rajya Sabha on day of nomination."
Meanwhile, Congress leaders Deepender Hooda, Syed Naseer Hussain and Gourav Vallabh on Sunday resigned from party spokesperson post to campaign for Mallikarjun Kharge in the upcoming party president polls.
Congress MP Shashi Tharoor kickstarted his campaign for the Congress president polls by paying tribute at Deekshabhoomi in Nagpur, where BR Ambedkar converted to Buddhism along with his followers in 1956. Former Union ministers Mohsina Kidwai, Saifuddin Soz, four MPs and G-23 leader Sandeep Dikshit are among those who signed the nomination forms in support of Tharoor’s candidacy for the post of party president.
First Published: IST