Congress to contest 2018 Rajasthan Assembly polls under Rahul
The Congress will fight the 2018 Assembly elections in Rajasthan next year under Rahul Gandhi’s leadership, said Avinash Pande, All India Congress Committee (AICC) general secretary in-charge for the State. Mr. Pande, who was here to attend his first meeting of the Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC), also put an end to speculations about organisational changes being made to the party at the State level. Instead, he said the Congress would focus on strengthening membership campaigns at the booth level, besides improving coordination between the frontal wings and holding training camps for the cadres.The executive meeting reportedly saw senior leaders highlighting that there was no place for factionalism in the party. The Congress workers are seemingly divided into camps owing allegiance to PCC president SachinPilot, former Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, former Union Minister C.P. Joshi and Leader of Opposition Rameshwar Dudi.Mr. Pande affirmed that all senior leaders had told him that they had “no personal agenda”, and that their priority was to defeat the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party. He hinted that no single leader would be projected as Chief Ministerial candidate, adding that a decision would be taken after the party wins the election.The AICC general secretary also said that Mr. Gandhi had emerged as the biggest challenge before the BJP. “That is why they go about maligning his image, misleading people and spreading rumours,” he said, adding that the BJP had failed to deliver on its promises made to people in Rajasthan.Campaign against BJPMr. Pilot, meanwhile, said the Congress functionaries would travel to remote areas in the State to apprise the people of the BJP’s failures. “It is only because of continuous protests and demonstrations by the Congress in favour of people’s interests that some of the schemes launched by the [previous] Congress regime are still being run,” he said.