Sonia Gandhi’s Return May Restore Madhya Pradesh Old Guards Kamal Nath, Digvijaya Singh to Glory
While Madhya Pradesh CM Kamal Nath is unable to expand his cabinet after the party’s Lok Sabha defeat, Digviajaya Singh has steadily been divested of his power in states other than Madhya Pradesh.
Bhopal: Sonia Gandhi’s return to the helm of the Congress has caused a ripple in national politics, and is expected to alter the dynamics of the party in Madhya Pradesh as well.
Many believe that Sonia Gandhi’s appointment as the interim party president could help chief minister Kamal Nath’s position in Madhya Pradesh and the entire nation.
When Rahul Gandhi became party president, the Congress’ younger members seemed to have gained prominence instead of the trusted old lieutenants of the Gandhi family like Digvijaya Singh and Kamal Nath himself.
Since Rahul stepped down as party chief, it is believed that it is old guards against the young within the Congress.
During the Madhya Pradesh assembly elections in 2018, the former party chief had zeroed in on Jyotiraditya Scindia for the post of chief minister. However, Nath with help from his ‘old friend’ Digvijaya Singh and support from Sonia Gandhi, nixed the Scindia scion and assumed the post instead.
His stature, however, continues to be challenged by Scindia and by his supporters in the cabinet like Pradyuman Singh Tomar, who recently had a heated exchange with the CM over the balance of power in the government.
With Sonia having assumed the reins once again, Nath is expected to regain his clout in the party, a political analyst from Bhopal, who refused to be identified, said.
With the pressure after the party’s defeat in the Lok Sabha polls and uncertainty looming large over Rahul’s fate, the CM was unable to expand his cabinet.
Moreover, Gandhi’s accusation targeted at Rajasthan CM Ashok Gehlot and Kamal Nath that they preferred their sons to the interests of the party also weakened Nath’s stand.
Besides Nath, AICC general-secretary Digvijaya Singh could also benefit from Sonia’s recent appointment. Singh was slowly divested of his powers in Goa, Karnataka, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh over the last few years and was limited only to Madhya Pradesh.
Though Singh had proved his worth by guiding the Congress to win the 2018 assembly polls as Coordination Committee chairman, his stature was dashed yet again in 2019 when he lost to BJP’s Pragya Thakur, a first timer and terror accused, in Lok Sabha polls.
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