Gujarat Congress workers ransack party office in Ahmedabad as dissent boils over
Senior legislators in Congress’s Gujarat unit expressed their unhappiness with the leadership in the state and workers resigned, a day after the party declared the names of its presidents for at least 10 districts.Updated: Jun 26, 2018 18:15 IST
The brewing dissent in Congress’s Gujarat unit came to the fore on Tuesday as some senior legislators expressed their unhappiness with the leadership in the state and workers resigned, a day after the party declared the names of its presidents for at least 10 districts.
Workers in Ahmedabad stormed into the party’s headquarters in Paldi area of Ahmedabad and disrupted a press conference by the president of the Gujarat unit, Amit Chavda. They also ransacked the ground floor, which houses the president’s office.
“I appeal to the workers to put a united fight against the BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party)when the people have lost faith in it,’’ Congress spokesperson Manish Doshi said.
Party president Rahul Gandhi had put a young leadership at the helm of state affairs after a remarkable performance in the assembly elections last year by winning 77 of the total 182 seats - the first time since 1995. It was an attempt to revamp the party with young leaders in the state ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
But state president Chavda and leader of opposition Paresh Dhanani are facing a test within six months as seniors from the party lead the dissent.
The developments came on a day when BJP president Amit Shah is in Ahmedabad to begin the preparations for the Lok Sabha elections, which is less than a year away.
“Not with the party, I am unhappy with state leadership,’’ Congress’ Saurashtra strongman Indranil Rajyaguru said on Tuesday.
The former MLA, who unsuccessfully contested the 2017 assembly elections against chief minister Vijay Rupani, resigned from all posts on Monday night, soon after the party declared its presidents.
Many workers from Rajkot also tendered their resignations on Tuesday.
Kunwarji Bawalia, who was one of three senior leaders from Saurashtra with Vikram Madam and Javeed Pirzada to express their disappointments with the state of affairs in the party, also created further stir on Tuesday with his surprise visit to Ahmedabad when Shah was around.
Bawalia had rushed to Delhi last week to meet party president Gandhi.
Congress lost five district panchayats to the BJP in the state last week amid allegations of cross-voting by its councillors in the elections held for the posts of presidents and vice-presidents.
The opposition party, which won these local bodies in 2015, accused the BJP of using money power to “buy” its elected members. The BJP, however, claimed the Congress lost due to “infighting” in that party.
First Published: Jun 26, 2018 17:52 IST