Kapil Sibal rebuts ‘BJP collusion’ remark attributed to Rahul Gandhi, deletes tweet after ‘personal clarification’

Senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal on Monday stirred a controversy on social media when he slammed Rahul Gandhi for alleging that those who had written the letter to Sonia, were colluding with the BJP.

The tweet, which made headlines when the crucial Congress Working Committee meeting was underway to decide over the new party chief, was later deleted by Sibal who said, “Was informed by Rahul Gandhi personally that he never said what was attributed to him . I therefore withdraw my tweet.”

In response to Sibal’s tweet, Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala defended Rahul and urged Sibal not to be misled but “false media discourse”.

High drama unfolded during the CWC meeting after reports cited “sources” who claimed that Rahul had accused the “dissidents”, who wrote the letter to Sonia, of “colluding with the BJP”.

It provoked sharp responses from the signatories, including Kapil Sibal and Ghulam Nabi Azad. According to a report by NDTV, Azad offered to resign if the “charges” of collusion were true.

Criticising the leaders who signed a letter seeking leadership changes in the party, Rahul reportedly said that the CWC is the forum for discussion of issues and hit out at the leaders for making it public through the media.

Rahul also stated that he was deeply hurt as the letter seeking “sweeping changes” in the Congress comes at a time when the party is putting up a fight in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan and Sonia was admitted to the hospital, according to CNN-News18.

The Congress is in the middle of an internal crisis, which was triggered after at least 23 party leaders wrote to Sonia Gandhi demanding a complete overhaul of the organisation.

On Sunday, 23 senior Congress leaders, including five former chief ministers, Congress Working Committee members, sitting MPs, and former Union Ministers, had written a letter calling for sweeping changes, and organisational elections from the block level till the CWC. Acknowledging the rise of the BJP, the letter noted that the fall in support base and losing the confidence of the youth are matters of serious concern.

Amid a debate over the leadership issue, top Congress leaders are currently holding a meet in New Delhi through video-conferencing on Monday to discuss the matter. There has been a clamour within a section of Congressmen for Rahul to take over as the president of the grand old party again.

The CWC meeting comes close on the heels of Congress president Sonia completing a year as the interim party chief, a post she accepted last year after her son Rahul stepped down.

A debate is again raging in the Congress over the uncertainty related to its leadership. In an official media briefing two days ago, Congress said its workers across the country want Rahul to take charge of the party.

With inputs from agencies

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