Non-Gandhi can lead Cong but family key to party, says Mani Shankar Aiyar
Amid uncertainty over Rahul Gandhi continuing as Congress president, senior leader Mani Shankar Aiyar said on Sunday that a ‘non-Gandhi’ can be party chief, but the Gandhi family must remain active within the organisation.
“The BJP’s objective is to have a ‘Gandhi-mukt Congress’ so as to have a ‘Congress-mukt Bharat’, he claimed. It would be best that Rahul remains party chief, but at the same time, Rahul’s own wishes must also be respected,” Aiyar told news agency PTI in an interview. “I am sure we can survive if we have to without a Nehru-Gandhi as the titular head of the party, provided the Nehru-Gandhis remain active in the party and can help resolve a crisis in case serious differences arise.”
Aiyar said Rahul has given about a month to the party to find a replacement and there have been confabulations within the Congress over the issue with the feeling in the party overwhelmingly in favour of Rahul staying on. He said media must wait for the “deadline” to know whether a replacement has been found or Rahul is persuaded.
“I have every confidence that whether with Mr Rahul Gandhi at the helm or somebody else, the party will fight back...,” he said.