BHUBANESWAR: Various factions of Congress have been preparing to make their grievances heard before a three-member group of the party’s central observers who are scheduled to arrive at the capital city on Friday to take stock of the party’s situation in the state.
Chhattisgarh MP Tamradhwaj Sahu, Assam MP Sushmita Dev and former Union minister of state Jitendra Singh have been dispatched to the state by party chief Sonia Gandhi. The team will be arriving against the backdrop of continued infighting within the ranks of the grand old party for the past one year. One section of the Congress, mainly comprising legislators, have been actively seeking the ouster of Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) president Prasad Harichandan.
Sahu, Dev and Singh are scheduled to meet party leaders here over the course of three days beginning from August 12.
Many of the party’s MLAs have been openly backing the return of former OPCC chief Niranjan Patnaik at the helm. There is also speculation that former Union minister Bhakta Charan Das may take the reign of the state division of the Congress.
Congress MLA Kailash Chandra Kulesika on Tuesday said they would suggest the name of Niranjan as OPCC chief to the central team. Niranjan Patnaik, however, said he is not in any race for any post. “However, I do want the Congress to revive,” Patnaik told reporters here.
A cornered Prasad Harichandan, meanwhile, said all the Congress leaders want the party to do better.