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Rahul Gandhi expected to take over as Congress chief in 2016

 2016-05-03 04:48:50.0

downloadTahlka news Bureau,

New Delhi:�Senior Congress leader Jairam Ramesh has expressed confidence that Rahul Gandhi will take over as party president in this year only.

Rahul Gandhi is currently vice-president of the Congress.

Jairam Ramesh also skirted questions from the media on whether Rahul Gandhi is being projected as UP CM by election strategist Prashant Kishor.

"Rahul Gandhi is MP from Amethi and vice president of Congress. We all expect him to be the president of the Congress in 2016," party leader Jairam Ramesh said at the AICC briefing.

According to reports, Kishor is learnt to be in favour of either Priyanka Gandhi Vadra or Gandhi taking the lead in the state election as the chief ministerial candidate.

On the possibility of Priyanka Gandhi Vadra as the chief ministerial candidate, Ramesh said, "I have no knowledge". According to reports, Kishor feels that Congress can come back to power in 2019 in the Hindi heartland by projecting the Congress vice president and if people start believing that he can lead them to victory in an election.

At the same time, the report also said if Gandhi does not give his consent then Priyanka Gandhi Vadra's name should be propped in Uttar Pradesh. And if both turn down the offer, then Kishor may suggest former Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit's name.

Kishor, who had managed the successful election campaigns for Narendra Modi in 2014 Lok Sabha polls and Nitish Kumar-led 'Grand Alliance' in Bihar Assembly elections last year, has been drafted by Congress to draw up a campaign strategy for the key state.

There is speculation of changes in Uttar Pradesh Congress this month. Nirmal Khatri is PCC chief for the last few years while Pradip Mathur is CLP leader.

Congress is in political wilderness in UP since 1989 which saw the emergence of BSP and issues like Ram Mandir and Mandal made it a marginal force where it was in power for almost all the time since independence.

There are reports that Gandhi's supporters are pitching for his takeover as party chief sooner than later. He was made the party vice president at the Jaipur Chintan shivir in January 2013.

Sonia Gandhi has created a record of being at the helm of the party since March 1998.

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