New Delhi: Facing a leadership crisis after Rahul Gandhi quit as Congress president, top party leaders went into a huddle on Thursday to discuss the way forward, but there was no decision when the Congress Working Committee would meet to decide on his successor.
Senior leaders Motilal Vora, Ahmed Patel, Ghulam Nabi Azad and Anand Sharma met at the office of the Leader of Opposition at the Parliament complex and deliberated on the future course of action, sources said.
The next step would be to convene a meeting of the Congress Working committee (CWC), the highest decision-making body of the party, and it might happen as early as next week, but there is no official confirmation, they said.
Senior Congress leader Sonia Gandhi is set to travel abroad in the next few days for medical check-up and she is likely to be accompanied by her son Rahul Gandhi.
His sister and Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra is already abroad and is unlikely to return soon.
With the Gandhis abroad, a meeting of the CWC could be held without their presence but any decision on the next Congress chief would not be taken without their consent.
Rahul Gandhi attended a Mumbai court hearing in a defamation case Thursday and is likely to attend another similar hearing in a Patna court on Saturday.
The various options before the CWC would be to either have an interim Congress president till the time a regular appointment is made through election, nominate a new Congress chief or form a presidium that could run the party till the time regular election to the top post is made.
Probable candidates for the post of Congress president include Motilal Vora, Mallikarjun Kharge, Ashok Gehlot and Mukul Wasnik.
"It is now up to the CWC pick a suitable candidate at the earliest. Given that 70 per cent of India is below the age of 40 years, I would suggest that the party president be someone who can connect with the youth and their problems. The energy and drive of fresh leadership is the need of the hour," senior Punjab Congress leader Pratap Singh Bajwa said on Twitter.
Gandhi, in his open letter on Wednesday, said he had asked the CWC to entrust the task of finding the new Congress president to a group of people.
"Immediately after resigning, I suggested to my colleagues in the Congress Working Committee that the way forward would be to entrust a group of people with the task of beginning the search for a new President. I have empowered them to do so and committed my full support to this process and a smooth transition," Gandhi said in his letter.
Rahul Gandhi has already said that any such decision would be have his approval but he would not like to get into the selection process.
Updated Date: Jul 04, 2019 22:32:47 IST