A top leader of the Congress party, who was earlier one of the closest advisors to former president Sonia Gandhi, has said there is “no friction” in the party anymore and everybody (inside the party) completely believes in Rahul Gandhi’s “vision”. 

Talking to The Sunday Guardian, the senior functionary added that the new Congress president is leading a team which has an adequate, and a “balanced mix” of old and new faces.

 “Concerns were raised by some people in the party when Rahul Gandhi had started encouraging young politicians. But now, there is no friction. Everybody believes in his vision and he, too, puts his trust in his advisors. His team is a mix of people—both the new faces and the old. If you look at Goa, Karnataka and other states too, the secretary level is still occupied with senior leaders in the Congress,” said the top leader.

According to the functionary, Rahul Gandhi has a core private team, and a separate team of senior advisors, who coordinate and discuss on matters related to the party’s stance and other pertinent issues.

According to sources in the party, it would not be before another one or two months that any changes in the organisational or structural level will be announced. “Announcements are still in the pipeline. Discussions have been underway, but nothing has been finalised in terms of who will be allotted what role,” the leader added.

Several changes are expected to take place in the party under the brand new leadership, but no major announcements are expected to be made before the plenary, which is likely to be held in January in Delhi or in Karnataka. Rahul Gandhi is expected to introduce new faces to the new Congress Working Committee (CWC), which will be elected at the plenary.

Countering the high-castle image of Rahul Gandhi, the senior Congress leader said, “There is no president of any political party who is too accessible. He has started giving more interviews to the media than before. People too know the real Rahul Gandhi. Our increased vote share in Gujarat is the evidence.”

The leader added, “People’s perception towards Rahul Gandhi has changed. And it has changed for good. He has come a long way to being an articulate leader now. There is no barrier between him and his voters.”

Even as Rahul Gandhi’s frequent temple visits during campaigning in Gujarat raised questions about his stance on soft-Hindutva, sources in the party said that there is no change in Congress’ position as a secular party.

 

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