NEW DELHI: Senior leader Ahmed Patel on Saturday formally took charge as the new treasurer of the All India Congress Committee, replacing Motilal Vora, who has been managing the party's coffers for a long time.
Ahmed Patel has long been the political secretary of former Congress president Sonia Gandhi and had earlier served as party's treasure.
He is currently a member of the Rajya Sabha.
The Congress leader from Gujarat is also known as a key resource mobiliser for the party.
Delhi: Congress leader Ahmed Patel takes over from Motilal Vora as Congress treasurer pic.twitter.com/Qf8ddCzV68
— ANI (@ANI) September 1, 2018
Nonogenarian Vora has been made the general secretary in charge of administration.
The Congress has been of late facing a severe resource crunch. There were reports that the party is running on overdraft for about Rs 100 crore.
He was recently appointed as the new AICC treasurer, replacing octogenarian Moti Lal Vora, by Congress president Rahul Gandhi.
Rahul also appointed former Union minister Anand Sharma as the chairperson of the party's foreign affairs department replacing Karan Singh, the Congress said in a statement.
Luizinho Salerio was appointed as AICC general secretary in-charge of north-eastern states, excluding Assam, replacing CP Joshi. Former speaker Meira Kumar has been made a permanent invite to the Congress working committee, the highest decision-making body of the party.
Patel's appointment was part of the much-talked-about rejig in the Congress party ahead of 2019 polls aimed at reviving the party's fortunes under the leadership of Rahul Gandhi.
Patel, who was a key operator during the UPA’s rule during 2004-14, was also recently named a member of the reconstituted Congress Working Committee.
Rahul Gandhi, who has been pushing for generational change in the Congress, zeroed in on Patel after he countered BJP chief Amit Shah’s attempts to defeat him in the Rajya Sabha polls from Gujarat last year.
He also reportedly played an important role in Gujarat assembly elections in which Congress party performed exceptionally well, improving its 2012 rally.
Since Congress party has been facing a financial crunch, Patel assuming charge as the party's treasurer is likely to boost its coffers.
Patel's appointment also assumes political significance as the party aims to take on a formidable BJP led by Narendra Modi and Amit Shah in the upcoming polls in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh and Odisha, and the Lok Sabha elections in April 2019.