Mallikarjun Kharge is proven to be the most preferred choice of Congress leaders and he is all set to chair as Congress president. News agencies have reported that the elected president will take charge after Diwali in the presence of senior leaders in a programme at the Congress headquarters. The Congress is set to get a new president. This one major change can freeze the attack on Gandhi family being a dynasty. Former Union Ministers Mallikarjun Kharge and Shashi Tharoor were in the fray and it will be for the first time in 24 years that the party will get a party chief who does not belong to the Nehru-Gandhi family. Mallikarjun Kharge got elected as a Chief – Congress.
Mallikarjun Kharge, widely seen to be the “Gandhi-approved” candidate, won 90 per cent of the votes cast on Monday. He scored 7,897 votes while Shashi Tharoor finished with 1,072. Even before the results were announced, Rahul Gandhi had declared Kharge as the winner at a press conference in Andhra Pradesh. On the other hand, Shashi Tharoor alleged “extremely serious irregularities” in the election process. Salman Soz, representing Tharoor’s team, later said they had been “assured of a fair inquiry” and had agreed that counting should continue. The counting of votes, which began at 10 am at the Congress headquarters in Delhi, ended around 1 pm. Tharoor somehow accepted the defeat.
The election comes three years after Sonia Gandhi agreed to temporarily lead the party when Rahul Gandhi stepped down, taking responsibility for the two consecutive routes of the party in the 2014 and 2019 general elections. It was held after multiple calls for change and hiccups over finding a candidate against Shashi Tharoor. Kharge was a last-minute entrant, persuaded to contest by a section of Central leaders when Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot dropped out of the race even before it started.
Seen initially as the front-runner, Gehlot’s candidature went sideways after his loyalist MLAs launched an open revolt in Rajasthan to keep his arch-rival Sachin Pilot from succeeding him as the Chief Minister.Since Independence; the Congress has mostly been led by a member of the Gandhi family, who were elected unanimously. Elections were held only six times as there was more than one candidate – starting in 1939 when P Sitaramayya, backed by Mahatma Gandhi, lost to Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose. The result is likely to be declared between 3 pm to 4 pm. The ballot boxes from the state headquarters have reached the counting place in the Congress office.
Shashi Tharoor today alleged “extremely serious irregularities” as votes were counted two days after the Congress held a milestone election, the first in over 20 years, and one in which no Gandhi was in the race. Shashi Tharoor on Wednesday levelled allegations of “extremely serious irregularities” in the conduct of the Congress presidential elections held in Uttar Pradesh. Soon after counting began, Tharoor’s team alleged that there were “disturbing facts” in the election process in Uttar Pradesh and demanded that votes in the state be cancelled.
Tharoor is the most circulated critic of the policies of the Nehru-Gandhis within the Congress, a party he chose to join because he was “ideologically comfortable with it”. It would be easy to dismiss Tharoor as a caricature of the Lutyens liberal who prides himself on being a walking thesaurus, an English language – snob, a lover of elite comforts. Yet, unlike the Gandhis, whose attempts to flirt with temple-hopping found few takers, Tharoor has publicly called himself a Hindu, and written two books on it.
Tharoor is also smart at social networking; he has 8.3 million followers on Twitter, compared to Sachin Pilot’s 4.1 million, and P Chidambaram’s 1.7 million. This gives him significant reach amongst politically-conscious youth. Perhaps to add to that appeal, he recently did a stand-up comedy routine for Amazon Prime Video. He is conventionally good-looking and is always perfectly turned out, attributes which always help in contemporary TV-driven politics. Throor is not loyal to the Gandhis and on several occasions he rebelled against party leadership.
Sashi Tharoor is a tech savvy person. He started using tweeters long back when very few people in India could actually understand the concept of tweeter. But, his remarks on twitter have made a mark and some have become very controversial. But, honestly his tweets are literally worth reading. He can sum up a story in such a way in the limited way of Tweeter, is really astonishing! He might be a good leader but definitely not very loyal or trustworthy, his intelligence and status is dominant and that is not acceptable to Congress veterans. Congress has typical internal discipline and protocol where Tharoor is the biggest mismatch.
In the meantime, his love life became a national gossip. His affair and then marriage with Sunanda Pushkar hogged the limelight for many days. Everything was going fine but sudden demise of Sunnanda Pushkar becaem a hotcake topic and it spread like fire, which gave him unwanted and demeaning fame to some extent accusing him for the murder of his wife. Tharoor is formidable for his cache and panache. He is perhaps the one of few open book personalities in the inchoate and martinet Congress party. The Hoi Pollio of India relates to Modi and usually has abnegation for a person like Tharoor and his westernized life. The egregious nature of Indian Politics has prevented good stalwarts from taking over. The obstreperous Arnab Goswami has maligned him on various occasions. But Tharoor stands tall despite his obvious forbearance.