Gujarat Congress leaders confident of party's prospects in state despite Shankersinh Vaghela's exit

Top Congress leadership discussed the situation arising out of Shankarsinh Vaghela's exit on Saturday, exuding confidence that it will have no effect on the party's prospects in the upcoming Assembly polls in Gujarat

PTI July 22, 2017 22:36:42 IST
Gujarat Congress leaders confident of party's prospects in state despite Shankersinh Vaghela's exit

New Delhi: Top Congress leadership discussed the situation arising out of Shankarsinh Vaghela's exit on Saturday, even as state leaders exuded confidence that it will have no effect on the party's prospects in the upcoming Assembly polls in Gujarat.

Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi had convened a meeting of top party leaders from Gujarat to discuss the impact of Vaghela's exit. The meeting was attended by party chief Sonia Gandhi's political secretary Ahmed Patel, general secretary in-charge of Congress in Gujarat Ashok Gehlot, PCC chief Bharatsinh Solanki, and other state leaders.

Gujarat Congress leaders confident of partys prospects in state despite Shankersinh Vaghelas exit

Shankarsinh Vaghela announced his resignation from Congress on Friday. PTI

When Rahul Gandhi asked about the bearing of Vaghela's exit, Gujarat Congress leaders assured him that his quitting the party will have no effect on the party's performance in the Assembly polls slated for November-December.

The Congress has been out of power for the last 22 years in Gujarat, the home state of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and is striving hard to regain power there.

During the meeting, the party leadership also exuded confidence of winning the Rajya Sabha seat in 8 August polls. The party needs 47 votes to win the seat and it has 57 legislators in the 182-member assembly. The Rajya Sabha seat is currently held by Patel, who is in his fourth term since 1993.

The Gujarat Congress has been divided between factions of PCC chief Solanki and CLP leader Vaghela, who was seeking replacement of the PCC chief. Gehlot has termed Vaghela's decision as "wrong" and "unfortunate" and said, "I fail to understand Shankersinh Vaghelaji's sudden decision. He seems to be acting under some pressure from BJP leaders."

Amid indications of a rapprochement with Vaghela, Gehlot said, "The Congress party hopes that any misunderstanding he has will be resolved. Vaghelaji's decision at a time when Congress is about to win majority in the Gujarat assembly is absolutely
inappropriate."

Gehlot said the party has good prospects of winning the polls, claiming there is huge anti-incumbency against the ruling BJP which has been in power in Gujarat for nearly two decades.

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