Welcome News: Rahul Gandhi Is Finally The President of Indian National Congress

Rahul Gandhi is the new Congress party president. (Arvind Yadav/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

The ‘elections’ for Congress president post have concluded on expected lines, with Rahul Gandhi getting ‘elected’ unopposed by the 132-year old party. The formal declaration will now take place on 16 December, 2 days before Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh state election results.

The results for the elections for the post of president were scheduled to come out on 19 December, but in absence of any contender for the post, Rahul was declared as the new Congress party president.

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Rahul is set to be the fifth Congress president belonging to the Nehru-Gandhi family and will take over from his mother Sonia Gandhi who has had been the president for 19 years - the maximum by any leader in the Congress.

Collectively, the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty has been at the party helm for more than 35 years now, of the 70 years since independence. With Rahul taking over the party now, the trend is set to continue as Rahul is considered the youth leader of the party.

Rahul’s elevation was lauded by several party leaders, including Ghulam Nabi Azad who claimed, “Much before he was elected he has shown his mettle. He knows his responsibility.”

Rahul was elevated to the post of party vice-president in January 2013, however, his elevation saw the United Progressive Alliance (UPA), led by Congress reduced to 50 seats as against 334 seats for the National Democratic (NDA) alliance, led by the BJP.

Rahul’s elevation to the post, since the announcement of ‘elections’ by the party, follows several controversial events, with Congress leader Mani Shakar Aiyar likening the Congress party elections to Mughal successions and Shehzad Poonawala calling the elections unconstitutional.

Shehzad Poonawala has again questioned the ‘election’ since it became clear that there were no other candidates.

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