Gandhis will remain centre of Congress: Aiyar
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Last Updated: Monday, January 30, 2012, 23:25
New Delhi: Whether Rahul Gandhi becomes Congress president or not, the Gandhis will remain the centre of the party, says Congress leader Manishankar Aiyar.

Rahul's grandmother Indira Gandhi and father Rajiv Gandhi had taken over the reins of the party when they were 40.

Interestingly, Jawaharlal Nehru also became the President of Congress at 40", Aiyar pointed out adding with a smile that "at this rate, Rahul Gandhi is overaged".

However, the close friend of late Rajiv Gandhi said it was for Rahul to decide when to become the President of Congress.

Aiyar was addressing a gathering at a ceremony to release a book on Sonia Gandhi translated in Tamil by PMK leader and writer E Ponnusamy.

Aiyar said the Nehru-Gandhi family is still the centre of the party and they are being chosen voluntarily by Congressmen.

"It is not a behaviour of a dyansty. We voluntarily elect them. It is for the people to accept or reject," he said.

He also noted that all these leaders had faced rebellion from within the party and emrged victorious.

Aiyar said Sonia Gandhi wears the traditional woven saree, that is the culture of Tamil Nadu

Highly critical of Congress in Tamil Nadu, Aiyar said the party, which has been out of power in the state for the past 45 years, will not come back to power for the next 45 years because of the "disconnect" between the party and people.

It was a sad state of affair that the party was behaving like "slaves" of the Dravidian outfits to win in elections.

Speaking in Tamil, Aiyar said he deliberately did so to introduce one of the finest langauges to the audience of north Indians.

"It is really shameful that no school in north or eastern part of the country is making efforts to teach Tamil which is older than Sanskrit," he said.

Minister of State in PMO V Narayanasamy, who released the book, dismissed the suggestions that there was a disconnect between the party and government.

"There is perfect understanding between the Prime Minister and the Congress president. It is the party which runs the government. The government does not run the party. The party gave the manifesto and it is the duty of the government to fulfill it," he said.

He also described the events to desribe the uniqueness of Sonia Gandhi.


First Published: Monday, January 30, 2012, 23:24

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