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Congress leader Madhusudan Mistry slams Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP for criticising election of Rahul Gandhi as Congress president

With Prime Minister Narendra Modi slamming Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi’s imminent elevation to the party’s top post as “Aurangzeb Raj”, the Grand Old Party has dared Modi and the BJP to declare the process that the saffron party followed when Amit Shah was made its president.

On Monday, Congress vice president filed his nomination in the Congress party’s presidential polls. As many as 890 party delegates – including incumbent president and his mother Sonia Gandhi, former Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh and a host of other senior party functionaries – have proposed Rahul’s candidature. The Electoral College for the polls will comprise of over 7000 delegates. Rahul is, so far, the only contender in the fray and is likely to be declared the ‘winner’ either on Tuesday – after scrutiny of nomination papers is over – or on December 11, the last day of withdrawal of nominations as per the election schedule.

Although Rahul’s elevation is a foregone conclusion, the otherwise mundane presidential polls of the party have triggered a war of words ever since Poonawalla’s rebellion.

Last week, Shehzad Poonawalla, a Secretary with the Maharashtra unit of the Congress, had alleged that Rahul Gandhi was being ‘selected and not elected’ as the party chief and that the election process was rigged to ensure that the Nehru-Gandhi scion wins.

Shehzad had dared Rahul to resign as Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi and contest as a common Congress worker without using the clout that his surname has in the sycophancy-prone party, while adding that if Rahul was prepared to do so, he would contest the polls too.

On Sunday, addressing election rallies in his home state of Gujarat, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had used Shehzad’s claims to hit out at Rahul and the Congress party.

On Monday, Modi sought to mislead the voters in Gujarat’s Dharampur by selectively choosing a portion of a statement by Congress leader Mani Shankar Aiyar to attack the Congress’ presidential poll process. Modi said that Aiyar had given a statement wherein he claimed that under Mughal rule, it was understood that after emperor Jehangir, his son Shah Jahan would be the ruler and that there was no election to select the ruler. Modi asserted that Aiyar had admitted that the Congress is a ‘family party’.

What Aiyar had actually said was that the Congress organizational polls were not like the Mughal-era norm of the son taking over as emperor from his father and that in the Congress party anyone was free to contest the polls, including Shehzad Poonawalla.

Hitting out at Modi, Congress leader Madhusudan Mistry, who is also a member of the election committee of the party that is presiding over the Congress presidential poll process, said: “Our election process is being carried out as per the party Constitution but I want to ask Narendra Modi – what was the process that the BJP followed when Amit Shah was made BJP president”.

Mistry and a host of other party leaders have dared the BJP to declare whether it had any internal polls to decide who will be appointed as the saffron party’s chief.

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