New Delhi: The inside clash within the Mumbai Congress has aggravated grudges within the party as its MP Milind Deora has declared that he may not contest the upcoming elections.
Deora had contested with Sanjay Nirupam for the position of party president in the state but had lost out. “It is no secret that there are problems in the party,” said Deora as he opened up about the infighting in an interview .
A former MP from Mumbai South and at present part of the Congress’ publicity committee for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, Deora called Nirupam’s leadership faulty.
“I am hurt and disappointed. Many Congress leaders are sitting at home today. One should talk to these Congress leaders about why they feel dejected, disillusioned,” Deora was quoted saying. He also said that discrimination and lack of unity is responsible for the stagnant image of party in Mumbai.
Earlier, there were reports of infighting within the unit over Lok Sabha seat-sharing. The party’s parliamentary board meeting held last week had reportedly failed to finalise the list of candidates for the upcoming elections.
Nirupam is reportedly being stubborn on contesting from Mumbai West and not Mumbai North. Deora is said to have objected to the demand.
“I may not want to fight elections due to this infighting,” said Deora, adding that he has spoken to Congress president Rahul Gandhi about the matter and conveyed his concerns.
The leader said, “I don’t want to wash our dirty linen in public. Am sure the party leadership will take care of it,” adding, “If the party doesn’t fix this, it may affect poll performance.”
Deora and Nirupam have been involved in a tussle over the party’s leadership in Mumbai for some time.
Analysts said Nirupam was made the president because the party needed a Marathi face to take on the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance in the state.
“In the Congress, earlier it had never mattered which community you belonged to,” said Deora.
Nirupam had served as a Shiv Sena leader nearly 14 years ago. He left the party to join the Congress and quickly rose to prominence.
Charting out the Maharashtra politics playbook, Deora said that anyone who wins Mumbai has more chances of coming to power in Maharashtra.
Hinting at the need for greater unity within the party, he said that Mumbai is the cultural and economic capital and the party needs people to bring people together. The Congress is in need of some leader who will bring people together .
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