Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi on Monday offered to step down in the wake of the most humiliating defeat in the history of their party, but the Congress Working Committee expectedly rejected the proposal.
According to senior Congress leader Janardan Dwivedi, who addressed a press conference after the meeting of the party’s highest policymaking body, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had taken the responsibility for “whatever shortcomings existed at the govt level”.
The Congress’s problems would not be solved by the resignations of Sonia and Rahul, Manmohan Singh told the CWC, according to Dwivedi
The CWC had passed a unanimous resolution expressing full faith in the leadership of Sonia and Rahul, and had authorised Sonia to take whatever steps she deemed necessary to revamp the party, Dwivedi said.
Amarinder Singh, one of the few senior Congress leaders who will be in the new Lok Sabha, said, “Sonia and Rahul offered to resign but the CWC rejected it unanimously.” Congress spokesperson Raj Babbar said, “We will fight under the leadership of Rahul Gandhi.”
The CWC passed a resolution criticising the communication strategy of the government. It accepted the verdict of the people, and said both the government and party must share the responsibility for the rout.
Through the day, Congress leaders sought to throw a protective shield around Sonia and Rahul, saying “everyone” was responsible for the defeat. As the CWC met, Youth Congress workers shouted slogans in support of Rahul outside.
“The question of Sonia and Rahul resigning does not even arise. It’s a collective responsibility. I am equally responsible,” Manish Tewari said.