Congress Chief Ministers to Meet Rahul Gandhi Today as Party Makes Last-ditch Effort to End Leadership Crisis

New Delhi: Rahul Gandhi will meet the chief ministers of the Congress-ruled states on Monday, for the first time since he offered to resign as the party chief last month.

The meeting will come in the backdrop of continuing suspense over Gandhi’s future role in the party and a spate of resignations by Congress leaders at various levels.

Rajasthan chief minister Ashok Gehlot, Madhya Pradesh chief minister Kamal Nath, Punjab chief minister Amarinder Singh, Chhattisgarh chief minister Bhupesh Baghel and Puducherry chief minister V Narayanasamy will be present at the meeting with Gandhi on Monday.

Karnataka deputy chief minister G Parameshwara is also likely to come for the meet. The chief ministers had been planning to meet the Congress chief for long to request him to continue as the party chief. The chief ministers are also likely to discuss the mass resignations taking place in the party.

While the agenda of the meeting is not known, it is expected that there will be brainstorming over the dismal performance of the grand old party in the recently concluded Lok Sabha election, especially in the Hindi heartland states where it won three assembly elections in December last.

Gandhi, who became the party president in 2017, had on May 25 offered to step down from his post at the Congress Working Committee (CWC), taking moral responsibility for the party’s abysmal performance in the Lok Sabha elections. He had also lamented that Nath and Gehlot had kept their sons over the party.

While the party rejected his proposal, he has been adamant about his wish to quit. The move sparked a domino effect in the party, with several leaders tendering their resignation.

Gandhi had said he took the decision to ensure accountability for the party’s Lok Sabha poll debacle and there was no question of going back on it. “I have resigned after taking full responsibility and ensuring accountability for the party’s defeat in the Lok Sabha elections. I cannot ask others to resign too. It is up to them if they want to take responsibility,” he had said.

But sources say the Congress chief has privately expressed anger with many leaders who continue to stay on in their positions.