A day after almost conceding defeat, Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad made a U-turn on Friday as he said that it wasn’t true that Congress would not claim or was not interested in the Prime Minister post.
Ghulam Nabi Azad, Congress: No, this is not true that Congress will not claim or Congress is not interested in Prime Minister post. Of course we are the biggest and oldest political party. If we have to run the govt for five years biggest political party should be given a chance. pic.twitter.com/g31TFMHtJc
— ANI (@ANI) May 17, 2019
The Congress bigwig, unlike yesterday, when he dropped subtle hints to his party allies that they would be okay if Rahul Gandhi will not be offered the PM’s post, today in a massive turnaround, said that if we have to run the govt for five years biggest political party should be given a chance.
While interacting with media in Bihar yesterday, senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad sent out feelers to the opposition parties, which have refused to include Congress into the mahagathbandhan that if the consensus is made in Congress’ favour that their candidate should become the PM, then the party will take leadership. But if they are not offered the PM post, then they will not make an issue out of it and throw a tantrum that they will not let anyone else become the PM. Azad said that the main aim of the Congress and the Opposition is to defeat the NDA government.
Nevertheless, such retractions are something which is not new to the grand old party. Though, Rahul Gandhi has on several occasion expressed his keen willingness and offered himself, with extreme conviction, as the next Prime Ministerial candidate, at the time when Congress had actually decided that Rahul Gandhi would be Prime Ministerial candidate for the Congress in the 2019 elections, Rahul had himself flip-flopped saying he was ‘open to options’.
When asked whether he would back TMC’s Mamata Banerjee, who is not very approving of projecting Rahul Gandhi as the Prime Ministerial candidate, or BSP’s Mayawati, who currently has zero MPs in the Lok Sabha, Rahul Gandhi reportedly said he would support any candidate who is able to defeat the BJP and the RSS.
Moreover, last year, the grand old party had stated that the Congress was not even considering Rahul Gandhi as the PM face for Congress’ in the 2019 elections.
The bigwigs of the Congress party understand that losing the coalition partners of the crucial states will not only crumble the opposition unity but also cost Congress the numbers which, considering they didn’t even cross 50 in 2014. They also understand that the opposition coalition will not be possible with Rahul Gandhi as a PM candidate as many amongst the allies, like TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee, Samajwadi party president Akhilesh Yadav, NCP supremo Sharad Pawar, BSP leader Mayawati, have already expressed their reservations about making Rahul Gandhi the PM candidate.
In such a case, in order to keep the party’s position intact, it is only just that the party bigwigs are waving around their confused state of mind regarding Rahul’s Prime Ministerial candidature.