With Congress president Sonia Gandhi cracking the whip by seeking the resignations of the local unit chiefs of the five states where the party lost elections this month, including Navjot Singh Sidhu, the Punjab wing faces a stiff challenge to find a new head and rejig itself.
What will make the job even tougher is the clamour within the party that traditional Congressmen should be given precedence in the selection after the stunning loss under Sidhu. The demands from local leaders are in sync with the statements by the so-called Group of 23 rebels, or G23, who have sought preference over turncoats while selecting the Pradesh Congress Commitee (PCC) chief.
The party, which has faced one of its worst-ever electoral performances, will have to balance out caste equations while finalising not just the state unit chief but the leader of the opposition (LoP) as well. “A balance will have to be struck between Jat, Hindu face, or an OBC candidate while going in for the selection on both the key posts,” said a leader.
Though proper consultations are yet to begin, some experienced leaders available with the party include Partap Singh Bajwa, Sukhjinder Randhawa, Amrinder Singh Raja Warring, Tript Bajwa, Ravneet Bittu, Vijay Inder Singla, and Bharat Bhushan Ashu.