Congress President Rahul Gandhi lost to BJP’s Smriti Irani in Amethi by a margin of over 50,000 votes. (Source: PTI)

Congress Working Committee Meets On Saturday, Rahul Gandhi May Resign

After a rout in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections at the hands of the Bharatiya Janata Party, top Congress leaders will deliberate on the party losses at a meeting of the Congress Working Committee on Saturday in which party president Rahul Gandhi is likely to offer his resignation. He lost to the BJP’s Smriti Irani from the Gandhi family bastion of Amethi by a margin of 55,120 votes.

Murmurs have already started within the party over taking responsibility for the poor performance of the Congress across the country, with some of its leaders already sending in their resignations.

Uttar Pradesh Congress chief Raj Babbar and Odisha Congress president Niranjan Patnaik announced their resignations after the party's electoral debacle in their respective states.

According to sources, the party has convened a meeting of the Congress Working Committee, its highest decision making body, at 11 a.m. on Saturday. Rahul Gandhi is likely to offer his resignation at the meet, party sources said.

The top Congress leadership will deliberate on the reasons for the loss and assess them. The party suffered a loss for the second time in a row at the hands of the Narendra Modi-led BJP. It bagged only 52 seats in this election.

Top party leaders, including United Progressive Alliance chairperson Sonia Gandhi and former prime minister Manmohan Singh, are expected to attend the CWC meeting.

Babbar, who contested from Fatehpur Sikri, was defeated by a margin of 4,95,065 votes by BJP's Rajkumar Chahar.

"The results are depressing for the Uttar Pradesh Congress. I find myself guilty of not discharging my responsibility in a proper manner," Babbar tweeted in Hindi.

"I will meet the leadership and apprise it of my views. Congratulations to the winners for winning the confidence of the people," he said.

Odisha Congress president Niranjan Patnaik said, "I have sent my resignation to AICC President (Rahul Gandhi) owning moral responsibility for the party's poor show in both Lok Sabha and Assembly polls in the state. While the Congress faced defeat in the state, I too lost at the hustings," Patnaik said.

A committee, headed by senior leader Narasingha Mishra, has been set up to ascertain the reasons behind the drubbing suffered by the Congress in Odisha, he said.

Congress won only one Lok Sabha seat and nine assembly seats in the eastern state.

There are also reports that HK Patil, who was tasked to oversee the Karnataka Congress campaign in December, has quit—taking moral responsibility for the defeat.

Bloomberg Quint

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