Amid the uncertainty in the Congress over Rahul Gandhi’s insistence to step down as party president, a silent movement has begun in the party, spearheaded by a group of middle-level leaders, to persuade him to change his mind. One gets to hear that a group of former AICC office-bearers, ex-MPs and former Youth Congress national- and state-level officer-bearers met at Punjab Bhawan on Tuesday to discuss the crisis in the party. The meeting was attended by 25 to 30 leaders, most of them in their late-40s. A bigger meeting may be held in AICC soon, possibly in the next couple of days, and a plan is understood to be afoot to stage an indefinite sit-in at the Congress headquarters, urging Rahul to continue to lead the party.
Seeking Poll Reforms
A month after the BJP’s massive victory in Lok Sabha elections, electronic voting machines (EVMs) continue to occupy the mind space of Opposition leaders. Some leaders – NCP’s Sharad Pawar, AAP’s Sanjay Singh and senior Congress leaders Ghulam Nabi Azad, Anand Sharma and Jairam Ramesh met at Azad’s Parliament office on Tuesday to discuss the issue. A group of opposition parties have already given a notice in Rajya Sabha for a debate on electoral reforms. Sources said the leaders discussed about a presentation of EVMs by some Maharashtra-based engineers and decided to take forward their opposition to electronic voting machines in the coming days.
On Poaching Guard
Faced with exodus in West Bengal, the Trinamool Congress is stepping up vigilance in Parliament. Party’s Lok Sabha MP Kakoli Ghosh Dastidar has written to Speaker Om Birla, complaining against Biplab Mitra, the latest entrant to the BJP, getting into the Central Hall. Mitra, who joined the BJP on Monday, reportedly entered Central Hall with former Trinamool MP Mukul Roy. Dastidar wrote that as a former MLA, Mitra has no right to enter the Central Hall, where only former MPs and sitting MLAs are allowed, besides current MPs.