27 January, 2021

'Rao Should Have Quit Earlier,. What He's Done Isn't Enough'

'Rao Should Have Quit Earlier,. What He's Done Isn't Enough'

Rajesh Pilot, who is an elected member of the CWC, was the sole dissenter at its September 23 meeting. He argued in favour of a sort of ad hoc arrangement by making the seniormost general secretary, Janardhana Poojary, the officiating Congress president in place of Narasimha Rao. Pilot has been a dissenter all through—ordering Chandraswami’s arrest to embarrass Rao, then demanding that Rao step down as Congress president after the recent parliamentary elections, owning responsibility for the party’s defeat. A retired air-commodore, Pilot has won four of the five Lok Sabha elections he has contested since 1980 and seems to have meshed well into the fine mould of Congress tradition. He was one of the first few leaders to be present at the party office to greet Sitaram Kesri and promise him all support when he formally took over on September 24. Pilot spoke to Yubaraj Ghimire about the dilemmas facing the Congress. Excerpts:

Do you consider Rao’s resignation a victory for the dissidents?

It was circumstance and the...



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