Soon after out-going Congress president Sonia Gandhi said that ‘her role is to retire’, speculations about her retirement from politics started floating up. To clarify this, Congress party rushed in saying that Sonia Gandhi is retiring from party’s presidential post as Rahul Gandhi will now take over her post, but not from politics.
A day before formal induction of Rahul Gandhi as the President of 132-year-old political party – Congress, Sonia Gandhi told during a media report that “my role now was to retire”. Soon after these reports, rumours about Sonia Gandhi taking retirement from politics started swarming up. The Congress party prompted clarification regarding this and said that Sonia Gandhi is just retiring from the party post and not from politics. Taking it to Twitter, Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said: “Sonia Gandhi has retired as President of Indian National Congress and not from politics. Her blessings, wisdom and innate commitment to Congress ideology shall always be our guiding light.”
It is unclear about which post will Sonia Gandhi assign herself after Rahul Gandhi takes over the helm of Indian National Congress, but the party will seek her guidance as she has been serving as the president since 19 years. This means, Sonia Gandhi will be present in the Parliament sessions and the party’s agenda will also be decided after her guidance. Marking a generational shift, Rahul Gandhi will be the sixth Nehru-Gandhi scion to helm the party, taking over from his mother Sonia Gandhi who steered it through an era during which it was in power from 2004 to 2014.
The party is likely to create a post of patron for Ms. Gandhi, who has served as its longest serving president for 19 years. She has been successfully taking care of the party and has maintained its position as the main opposition even after losing the Raisina Hill reign. So her retirement is only from the post of president of Congress party. The post will formally be handed over to Rahul Gandhi on Saturday at the party headquarters in Delhi, where Sonia Gandhi is expected to speak about the challenges and the road ahead for the party as her son takes over her role.