On Wednesday, the Congress party appointed several Presidents and office-bearers for the party’s “international wing” – the Indian Overseas Congress. In a press release, the Congress party stated that it was glad to appoint President for a two year period in several countries in the European region. It is pertinent to note that the Congress party has appointed Presidents in European countries despite failing to appoint a President for its party in India.
The newly appointed Presidents of the Indian Overseas Congress has the responsibility to help build and expand the Indian Overseas Congress organization and institution in the respective countries, said the statement released by the Congress party.
@INCOverseas Hearty congratulations to the newly appointed Country Presidents of Indian Overseas Congress Europe team INCOverseas !— Anura Mathai (@Anuramathai) July 8, 2021
Wishing the entire team all the very best ! pic.twitter.com/enfwRBLaUn
“In this capacity, you are expected to identify and work with qualified, capable, committed and concerned people to lead the various initiatives of the IOC,” the Congress party said.
Nine Congress party members have been appointed as Presidents of Indian Overseas Congress units in their respective countries.
The names are:
- Dilbag Channa – Italy
- Joy Kochattu – Switzerland
- Dr Sonia Heldst – Sweden
- Sunil Korah – Austria
- Suldleevan Preet Singh – Belgium
- Harpinder Singh Ging- Holland
- Amarjit Singh (Amba) – Poland
- Dr Komal Kumar Javarappa – Finland
- Garisober Singh – Norway
In addition, the Congress party has appointed several office-bearers and Core committee members of the Indian Overseas Congress in Europe.
According to their website, the Indian Overseas Congress claims to be a group of “concerned, committed, diverse, capable and courageous Overseas Indians and friends of India” coming together in the form of a local cell at various key global cities to understand, educate, discuss, debate, learn, lead and promote Indian National Congress. Sam Pitroda, a veteran Congress leader and a close aide of Rahul Gandhi, is the Chairman of the Indian Overseas Congress.
The appointment of several Presidents for the party’s overseas wings come even as the Congress party has been struggling to appoint a full-time party president. Ever since Rahul Gandhi resigned from the post after a series of poll debacles, his mother Sonia Gandhi has taken the reigns of the party as interim chief. Sonia Gandhi has not been appointed as the full-time President of the party, however, she has been managing affairs of the party for over two years now.
Since then, the Congress party is struggling to find a leader to lead the party that is facing an existential crisis. However, despite serious infighting within the party and the continuing exodus of the leaders from the party, the Congress leadership has not shown any interest to appoint a party president, instead, they are busy appointing presidents for inconsequential overseas wings of the party.
Not just Europe: A sneak peak into Indian Overseas Congress and its controversial history
The Indian Overseas Congress, which claims to be the international wing of the Congress party, has been at the centre of several controversies in the last few years. The overseas wing of the Congress party has a history of joining hands with hostile countries and anti-India elements to interfere in India’s domestic politics.
In December last year, one of the senior members of the Indian Overseas Congress had unfurled a Pakistani flag at a protest against the Indian government over passing farm laws in Germany. The Indian Overseas Congress organised these anti-India protests in Germany in December 2020.
According to the BJP leader Suresh Nakhua, Raj Sharma, allegedly an office-bearer of the Indian Overseas Congress, was the person behind such protests in Germany, where the Pakistani flag was unfurled. Nakhua had also said that the IOC had recently donated Rs. 1 crore to the ‘farmer protests’, which subsequently resulted in the Republic Day riots and insurrection against the Indian state.
The IOC had claimed that their members were not present when the Pakistani flag was unfurled. However, Nakhua claimed to have video evidence of their participation which he says he will release soon.
The ‘farmer protests’ had provided an opportunity to India’s detractors across the globe, such as Indian Overseas Congress, to jump on the bandwagon to undermine Indian national interests and tarnish India’s reputation abroad.
In addition, the Congress party has also opened its overseas office in Turkey in 2019, a few days after Turkey had extended its support to Pakistan at the UN on the Kashmir issue. It is not an unknown fact that Turkey is a close ally of the terrorist-state of Pakistan and has often conspired to defame India in several global fora.
However, the Congress party went on to establish the Indian Overseas Congress (IOC) office in Istanbul even as Turkey continues to plot against India by joining hands with Pakistan.