By Hari Mohan
Alappuzha (Kerala) [India], September 20 (ANI): Senior Congress leader Jairam Ramesh on Tuesday said that anyone could file a nomination for the All India Congress Committee (AICC) President election.
While speaking to ANI in Alappuzha the congress leader said that nobody needed anybody's permission to file nomination papers.
"This is an open and democratic process. People are free to file the nomination papers as there is no need to seek permission from anyone," he said.
He further said that "Nominations will begin on 24th September. If there an election is to be held, it will be on the 17th of October and If there is no election, the successful candidate will be announced on October 1.
He also made it clear that the focus of the Congress party is Bharat Jodo Yatra even though there is an AICC President election. He said, "Our focus is Bharat Jodo Yatra. Rahul Gandhi is walking 16-17 hours a day. All of us are invested in Bharat Jodo Yatra. For us, the only single point is to make the Bharat Jodo Yatra a success. It should become an instrument for rejuvenating our party, strengthening the Congress party and for reconnecting us to the people."
His reaction came while asking about Sonia Gandhi's nod to Congress MP Shashi Tharoor to contest in the AICC President polls. Tharoor received her go-ahead after he met her in Delhi on Monday.
According to sources, Tharoor, during the meeting, expressed his wish to contest the elections scheduled to be held on October 17 to "make internal democracy" in the party stronger. Gandhi, in response, gave her nod to the Thiruvananthapuram MP and said that anybody can contest elections.
"Senior Congress leader and MP Shashi Tharoor gets a nod from Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi to contest for the post of the party president, after he reached out to her in a meeting today, citing he can make internal democracy stronger. Sonia Gandhi, Congress interim president, replied that he (Shashi Tharoor) can contest (for the post of the party president) if he wants, anybody can contest elections," said the sources.
Notably, Tharoor is one of the signatories of a letter written to Sonia Gandhi by the G-23 group (seeking reforms in the party). The meeting has brought clarity to his contesting the party president polls, which earlier was a matter of much speculation.
The election of the Congress President post will be held on October 17 as per the decision of the Congress Working Committee (CWC). The counting of votes will be done on October 19. (ANI)