Kanhaiya, Mevani Delay Congress Rejig in Two States?


CPI leader Kanhaiya Kumar, JNU scholar Umar Khalid and Gujarat MLA and Dalit activist Jignesh Mewani during “Freedom of Expression Meet” – a programme organsied on the first death anniversary of slain journalist Gauri Lankesh, ib Bengaluru on Sept 5, 2018. Gauri, 55, editor of Kannada weekly tabloid ‘Lankesh Patrike’, was shot dead in front of her house on September 5 night a year ago. (Photo: IANS)

Sources say, the Congress wants to rope in these two leaders ahead of assembly polls and particularly Mevani before Gujarat polls for their oratory and crowd pulling capabilities

NEW DELHI – The organisational restructuring in two state units, Bihar and Gujarat of the Congress party have been halted as talks with CPI leader from Bihar, Kanhaiya Kumar and Independent MLA Jignesh Mevani from Gujarat have not yet been finalised, sources said.

Both the leaders met Rahul Gandhi recently and sources say that talks are on between these leaders and the Congress party. However in between, the announcement for the rejig in Bihar Congress Committee has been delayed despite recommendation from the state In charge Bhakt Charan Das.

Sources say, the Congress wants to rope in these two leaders ahead of assembly polls and particularly Mevani before Gujarat polls for their oratory and crowd pulling capabilities. Mevani is an independent MLA in Gujarat and has won election with Congress support. The trio of Alpesh Thakore, Hardik Patel and Mevani was with the Congress in 2017 elections when Congress did put up a good show but could not win elections and now Congress wants to rope in Mevani ahead of polls while Alpesh has joined the BJP.

However when asked during AICC press conference on Thursday, Ajay Maken responded that he has no idea about it but said if something happens, media will be informed.

Speculations are rife in the Congress circles about Kanhaiya Kumar, the former JNU Students Union president, joining the party. Sources close to the CPI leader, on Tuesday had refuted claims and said ‘these are rumours which are being spread and there is no talk of his joining the Congress’.

Sources in the Congress say that he has been meeting Rahul Gandhi in the past and the offer to join the party has been pending since the last Lok Sabha polls.

Sources also said that during the talks in the past, Kanhaiya Kumar had emphasised on having his own team to work in Bihar in order to start a movement and then gradually take it to the national level.

The Congress is weighing its options and relations with the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader Tejashwi Yadav. The RJD is the oldest ally of the Congress and it does not want to leave the its side.

The Congress in Bihar in the recent Assembly polls was almost routed. It could manage to win just 19 seats out of 70 seats it contested in alliance with the RJD and its performance was considered one of the reasons for the defeat of the grand alliance. -IANS

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