NEW DELHI: Congress president Rahul Gandhi, who was defeated by former Union minister and senior BJP leader Smriti Irani in the recently concluded 2019 Lok Sabha election, on Thursday sent a team to ascertain the causes of his shocking defeat in his parliamentary constituency Amethi.
It may be recalled that the Gandhi scion was defeated by over 50,000 votes by Irani in Amethi, which is considered to be a stronghold of the Nehru-Gandhi family.
The team sent by the Congress president includes AICC secretary Zubair Khan and party's Raebareli in-charge KL Sharma.
Both Khan and Sharma have been directed to asses the factors which led to Rahul Gandhi's shocking poll defeat and submit their report at the earliest.
News agency ANI cited a senior party functionary from Amethi confirming the development.
Sharma was looking after Amethi Lok Sabha seat till 2009 when he was replaced by Chandrakant, a party worker from Madhya Pradesh.
He now manages Raebareli parliamentary seat, which is UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi's constituency.
In the recently-concluded Lok Sabha elections, Rahul lost to Irani by over 55,000 votes from the Amethi seat.
Since the party's humiliating defeat in the 2019 polls, Rahul Gandhi is reportedly not keen on continuing as Congress president. He has, instead, pressed for a non-Gandhi to be appointed as the Congress chief, according to sources.
However, the Congress central leadership has categorically rejected such reports as baseless and unnecessary rumour-mongering and authorised Rahul to reorganise the party and prepare a future roadmap for the party.
If sources are to be believed, Rahul Gandhi is still adamant on resigning from his post as the party chief. Rahul has reportedly asked the senior leaders of the party to appoint either an OBC or SC/ST leader as the new president of the party. Though Congress workers and leaders have been working overtime to convince Rahul to reconsider his decision, party sources said that he is in no mood to negotiate and has asked the leaders to look for his alternative as soon as possible.
Congress performed disastrously in the recently concluded Lok Sabha election, winning just 52 seats.
The party failed to win even one seat in several states, including Rajasthan, Gujarat, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi etc. Rahul took moral responsibility for the defeat and decided to quit as the party chief during the Congress Working Committee meeting last Saturday.
Several leaders from Congress and its allies, including RJD's Lalu Prasad Yadav, DMK's MK Stalin and JD(S)' HD Kumaraswamy have urged Rahul to not resign but it seems that the Gandhi scion has made up his mind to step down.