HindustanTimes Thu,17 Apr 2014

Rahul sticks to backing young party leaders

Saubhadra Chatterji, Hindustan Times  New Delhi:, February 11, 2014
First Published: 01:21 IST(11/2/2014) | Last Updated: 15:46 IST(15/2/2014)

The appointment of three state unit chiefs of the Congress on Monday is a further push to party’s deputy chief Rahul Gandhi’s new mantra: Let young leaders lead the state units ahead of the general elections. His choice also sends a message that he is keen to curb factionalism within the organization.


In December last, the party had picked Sukhdeo Bhagat, 40, to lead the Jharkhand unit. Last month, Sachin Pilot, four years younger to Bhagat, was asked to lead Rajasthan Congress committee. Last year, Jaydev Jena (58) had replaced senior colleague Niranjan Patnaik (65) as the party’s Odisha head.

But the underlying theme of these rejigs is also to uproot factionalism. The new Haryana head Ashok Tanwar is known to be ‘equidistant’ from chief minister Bhupinder Hooda’s loyalists and Kumari Selja’s camp.

“Rahul’s aim is clear. PCC chiefs should not work for any group but for the party,” said a Gandhi confidante. V M Sudheeran, the new Kerala chief also fits this bill as he is not associated with any lobby.

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