Sonia retired as Congress president but not from politics: Surjewala

Congress leader Sonia Gandhi

Congress leader Sonia Gandhi

The Congress president-elect said there should be a road map for the coming times and will have to systematically and actively prepare women at every level in the party to contest elections and ensure they have their representation.

With the crowning of Rahul Gandhi as new President of All India Congress Committee (AICC), a new energy is pumped into the young Congress leaders as Rahul Gandhi is a young and dynamic leader who believes in promoting youths. Mr. Gandhi ran unopposed to succeed his mother, Sonia Gandhi, as party president.

Gandhi's ascent coincides with state polls in Modi's home state of Gujarat that are shaping as a test for the prime minister, who has been facing criticism for softening economic growth and poor implementation of a nationwide sales tax.

Many BJP leaders are annoyed by the repeated visits to temple by Rahul Gandhi in the ongoing campaigns for elections.

The Nehru-Gandhi dynasty has stayed close to or at the summit of Indian politics for almost 100 years. Gandhi's father and grandmother were both prime ministers, and both assassinated. "We at Congress party do not use religion for our political objective", during an interaction he was seen saying this. "Much before he was elected he has shown his mettle".

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Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) swiftly dismissed Gandhi's election, saying he had become president only on the basis of "dynastic principle".

She added that even in the Assembly elections of Gujarat, Congress, on the initiative of Rahul Gandhi, had given ticket to large number of youths.

Asked what role she will assume after Rahul Gandhi takes over the reins of the party, Sonia Gandhi told media persons in the Parliament complex: "My role is to retire".

The Congress party also showed the screenshots of Rahul Gandhi's hand-written note in the visitors of temple to show that he has nothing to do with the entry, which was made in the register. Almost nine of 10 Indians have a favourable opinion of him and more than two-thirds are satisfied with the direction in which he is taking the country, a Pew survey found in November.

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