Rahul Gandhi files nomination, set to succeed mother as Cong chief

New Delhi: Ending the speculation over his elevation as party chief, Rahul Gandhi on Monday filed the nomination for post of President of the Indian National Congress at the headquarters of All India Congress Committee (AICC) in Delhi.

The Congress Vice-President will take over the charge of the party from his mother, Sonia Gandhi, who has been the party chief since 1998.

Senior party leaders, including Kamal Nath, Sheila Dikshit, Motilal Vora and Tarun Gogoi filed first set of nominations as proposers for Rahul.

After filing his nomination papers, Rahul met Manmohan Singh, Mohsina Kidwai, Dikshit and other senior Congress leaders .

It is speculated that he will be running unopposed for the post of party President, but the speculations can only be confirmed on Tuesday when the names of contenders will be published after scrutiny of nominations.

If there are no contenders, the AICC will make the final announcement of his name on 11 December – the last date for withdrawal of nomination.

Rahul is set to fill in his mother Sonia Gandhi’s shoes, who has been holding the post for nearly two decades.

The elevation comes with a fair share of drama as the Opposition has voiced their lack of confidence in Rahul’s ability to hold them together, the way his mother did.

Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader Sitaram Yechury recently said that Rahul cannot replace his mother, Sonia, who was “the glue” that held the Opposition together.

The party itself witnessed a much publicised discord recently, when Congress leader Shehzad Poonawalla alleged that the party’s presidential elections were rigged.

Nevertheless, various state units of the party have already expressed their support for Rahul’s elevation.

The process of nomination started on Friday, and today is the last date for filing nominations.

Rahul, who became Congress Vice-President in January 2013, will succeed his mother, who is the longest-serving chief of the party, having been at the helm from 1998.