NEW DELHI: Congress veteran Sonia Gandhi on Saturday congratulated son Rahul Gandhi for taking over as the party president at such a challenging time. "I congratulate Rahul Gandhi, he took up this responsibility (of party president) at a very challenging time. It is the beginning of a new chapter, the challenges we are facing are not usual ones. We need to make an India free of corruption and vendetta, under President Rahul Gandhi, let us pledge that we will make all efforts to do this, Sonia said at the ongoing three-day plenary session of the Congress.
Recalling old times, she said that the party was weakening at the time when she entered politics. "You all know how due to circumstances I entered the public sphere but when I realised that the party is weakening, keeping in mind sentiments of Congressmen, I entered the political arena," Sonia said.
"40 years back Indiraji's stunning victory in Chikmagalur turned around Indian politics. Once again our party must give a similar performance. The party's victory will be the nation's victory, it will be the victory for each one of us. Congress is not a political term, it is a movement," Sonia told party members.
Attacking Prime Minister Narendra Modi led government, she said that the Centre is weakening the programs that the United Progressive Alliance government started. "Under Manmohan Singh's governance economic growth was at its highest. Today I am saddened to see that Modi government is weakening and ignoring the schemes and programs implemented during UPA," she said adding that in the last four years, "this arrogant government has left no stone unturned to destroy the Congress."
Earlier in the day, the Congress resolved to adopt a "pragmatic approach" for cooperation with all like-minded parties and evolve a common workable programme to defeat the BJP-RSS in the 2019 general election. This indication of a pre-poll tie-up comes in the wake of efforts by the Congress to evolve a consensus among various opposition parties to unitedly take on the might of the BJP.
In its political resolution moved at the party's 84th Plenary Session, the Congress launched a scathing attack on the BJP-RSS, saying the country's core constitutional values are under attack and freedom of all is in jeopardy, with institutions under stress and their independence compromised.