The chief of Congress' women wing has joined the bevy of voices that have rallied behind party vice-president Rahul Gandhi to take over the mantle of the organisation from his mother Sonia Gandhi.
Rajasthan leader Sachin Pilot's announcement on 1 October that the Congress vice-president may take over as the party president shortly after Diwali set the ball rolling for various other state organisations to urge the Gandhi scion to lead from the front.
On Wednesday, Sushmita Dev, president of the All India Mahila Congress (AIMC), said that Rahul should lead from the front and take over as the chief of the main opposition party.
"I am a strong supporter of Rahul and the AIMC wants him to take charge as president of the party. The time has come for this to happen," Dev told PTI on Tuesday.
A Lok Sabha MP, Dev was accompanying Rahul in Vadodara when he addressed a gathering of students on the second day of his election campaign in Gujarat.
Bhavna Jain, Mumbai Mahila Congress vice-president, also echoed the views expressed by Dev and said, "He should take over as president of the party."
While there is strong support for Rahul among his party leaders and cadres, there is also strong criticism from many quarters that Congress is only bent on promoting dynasties.
Dismissing claims of dynastic politics in the party, Pilot said that political connections might help initially but success depended on performance.
"If you perform and win the hearts of people through work, delivery, and performance, then people will decide. The mere last name will only take you so far,” said Pilot, whose father Rajesh Pilot was a senior leader in Congress.
The Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala had earlier asserted that the party was resilient enough to welcome any leader or worker to contest for any post including that of the president, Rahul remains the unquestioned choice of every Congress leader and worker.
Updated Date: Oct 11, 2017 18:00 PM