The unresolved top-level leadership issue is back to haunt the Congress again as the party continues to witness more resignations among its regional leaders.
Congress national spokesperson Sanjay Jha recently vented his frustration over recent desertions in Gujarat by MLAs to flag the crisis.
“Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and now Gujarat, reflects the growing sense of insecurity among leaders about the party’s future which nobody is willing to address,” Jha told India Today TV.
Dissatisfaction among the party’s top brass has set off a fresh volley of allegations between Congress leaders.
Reacting to Sanjay Jha’s comments, former Union minister Ajay Maken during a presser on Sunday took a swipe at his former colleague in UPA government and Anandpur Sahib MP Manish Tiwari, who co-penned a column with Jha recently.
On Tuesday, Manish Tiwari said Jha was handpicked as national spokesperson while Maken was heading the Congress’s media department.
After Sandeep Dixit, now Congress’ National Spokesperson Sanjay Jha has challenged the status quo in the party after repeated poll losses.
Talking to India Today TV, Jha stuck to his comments published in a leading daily earlier this week which has raised a storm within the party.
He said it looks like nobody in the party is in a hurry to sort out things.
Even after a year has passed since the last Lok Sabha polls, the party is functioning with an interim President, Jha said. While he was upset with the Congress Working Committee (CWC), Jha praised senior Congress leader Rahul Gandhi who took moral responsibility for the election loss.
Sanjay Jha said after Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and now Gujarat, the MLAs and leaders are deserting the party.
“There is a sense in insecurity and these people are leaving because they are unsure about the party’s future,” he said.
“This is not Vajpayee’s BJP, it’s a formidable opponent we have to fight against but listlessness has crept in and it is disappointing.”
Jha added that the party urgently needs to do a serious review of its poll performance since it made way for the NDA government at the Centre in 2014.
In his own assessment, however, Jha said the Congress has not conducted a single meeting to discuss the issues that it faces.
He added that the AK Antony committee report on poll reverses in 2014 was never seriously discussed.
“Same happened after 2019 loss, while there is an urgent need to discuss political strategies, allies, fundraising and reducing bureaucracy within the AICC,” Jha said.
“Even the committees and various bodies of the party are comatose and need to be revamped, the CWC needs to take an urgent call on this,” he added.
Rejecting rumours that he is on his way out, Jha said that he will remain associated with Congress all his life.
“I am a Congressman by ideology and will be with the party forever,” he added.
Jha’s comments have exposed the internal rift within the party yet again.
Reacting to Jha’s comments, former Union minister Ajay Maken said the party had “enough room” for internal discussions. Maken’s criticism didn’t go unattended.
Congress leader Manish Tiwari told India Today TV on Tuesday that Maken’s comments were out of context.
Tiwari said that Sanjay Jha was given the responsibility of party’s national spokesperson when Ajay Maken himself was heading the media cell. However, Tiwari said he too disagrees with Sanjay Jha’s comments about the party affairs.
“He may have concerns but there is a certain time to raise such issues, at these times there is a need to appear united and stay focussed,” he said.