New Delhi। Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot, his Deputy Sachin Pilot and General Secretaries K.C. Venugopal and Priyanka Gandhi met Congress President Rahul Gandhi amid a leadership crisis following the party’s rout in the Lok Sabha elections.
Spokesman Randeep Singh Surjewala also met Rahul Gandhi at the latter’s residence. Gehlot arrived after Pilot had left.
Gandhi had offered to quit as the party President at the Congress Working Committee meeting held on 25th May but it was unanimously rejected.
The CWC, the party’s top decision making body, authorised Rahul Gandhi to make structural changes in the country’s oldest political party.
But party sources maintained that Rahul Gandhi was firm on quitting, triggering concern in the party that has always worked under the Nehru-Gandhi umbrella.
Priyanka Gandhi first arrived at Rahul Gandhi’s residence in the morning followed by Surjewala and Venugopal. Pilot reached the residence some time later.
After separate meetings with Rahul Gandhi which lasted for over 50 minutes, Pilot, Venugopal and Surjewala left.
Gehlot then reached the Gandhi residence.
On 27th May Gandhi had declined to meet Gehlot despite an appointment and asked him to meet Venugopal instead.
Congress Uttar Pradesh leader Pramod Tiwari also met Rahul Gandhi.
The Congress is expected to call another CWC meeting within the next four days.
Rahul Gandhi had blamed Gehlot and Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath for devoting more time in the constituencies of their sons instead of doing more for the party in the elections.
The Congress failed to win a single seat in 18 states and union territories and won only 52 seats in the 543-member Lok Sabha, not enough to qualify even for the post of Leader of Opposition. The most humiliating defeat for Congress is that party president Rahul Gandhi could not save his seat in Amethi.
It lost even in the states of Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh that it won in December, and failed the test in Karnataka, which it has been ruling since last May in alliance with HD Kumaraswamy.