G-23 abandoned their own Shashi Tharoor, says Amit Malviya; 'How soon before...'
Shashi Tharoor has 60 signatories including two former Union ministers, 4 MPs and one G-23 leader.
In a fresh take on the Congress presidential election, BJP's Amit Malviya said that the G-23, the 'rebel' grouping of the Congress that had strongly pitched for reforms abandoned their own -- Shashi Tharoor, in favour of Mallikarjun Kharge. "How soon before stories of Congress state offices shutting on Tharoor start doing the round?" Malviya tweeted. Also Read | Congress chief poll: It's Kharge vs Tharoor now as KN Tripathi's nomination junked
Tharoor and Kharge are contesting for the party's top post -- a friendly fight as Shashi Tharoor has claimed. The Thiruvananthapuram MP on Saturday disclosed who have have backed his candidacy. Among the prominent leaders, former Union ministers Mohsina Kidwai, Saifuddin Soz, MPs Karti Chidambaram, Pradyut Bordoloi, MK Raghavan, Mohammad Jawaid and G-23 leader Sandeep Dikshit are there. Also Read | 'If content, choose Kharge': Shashi Tharoor on crucial Congress contest
The presidential race saw several twists and turns with the entry of exit of Ashok Gehlot, Digvijaya Singh. Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot opted out of the contest after his loyalists put up a rebellion in Rajasthan against any possibility of Sachin Pilot replacing him in the state. Digvijaya Singh withdrew from the election as he did not want to contest against his senior Mallikarjun Kharge.
It is being speculated that Mallikarjun Kharge is the candidate that the high command wants to go ahead with but Shashi Tharoor indicated that he won't withdraw from the contest as he can't betray the people who supported him. I met with all three (Sonia, Rahul, and Priyanka) from the Gandhi family. They repeatedly told me there is no official candidate in the party president's election and there will be no such candidate. They want a good and fair election," Tharoor said.
If the party workers are happy with status quo, then they should vote for Kharge and if they want a change, he is the candidate, Shashi Tharoor said.
Salman Khurshid who has backed Kharge said, "Shashi says this (Kharge) has elements of continuity, his (Tharoor's) has elements of change. But continuity and change are subjective terms, relative terms".
"I think that the very fact that we are having this election is re-emphasis of continuity with change because it's not the first time that we are having elections. And that elections in the past have had certain features; this has its own features. So, for us this is all welcome", he said.