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Is Chhattisgarh going to be next to see leadership change?

Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel and Congress party's State in-charge P.L. Punia come out after meeting the party leader Rahul Gandhi, in New Delhi, August 27, 2021   | Photo Credit: PTI

After the change of guard in Punjab to end the leadership tussle, the question that is being asked in Congress circles is if Chhattisgarh is going to be the next State that may see a leadership change.

On September 17, when Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel was posed this question, he played it down.

“Our in-charge P.L. Punia had made a statement in this regard and that statement is final,” he told reporters in Raipur, referring to AICC State in-charge saying there was no discussion on leadership change when the State leaders met former party chief Rahul Gandhi in August.

But the issue is far from over though the circumstances are completely different from Punjab.

In Punjab, Capt. Amarinder Singh faced dissidence from party MLAs while Mr. Baghel enjoys the support of the majority of the Congress MLAs.

But Mr. Gandhi is keen on honouring a commitment he had made to Mr. Baghel’s colleague and Health Minister T.S. Singh Deo, that the chief ministership would be rotated after two and half years.

The deadline for the rotation was June 16 but neither has the high command been able to decide nor has Mr. Baghel expressed his willingness to step down.

Many believe that Mr. Gandhi’s proposed visit to Chhattisgarh has been delayed because the high command hasn’t been able to decide on the leadership issue.

Though Mr. Baghel has claimed that Mr. Gandhi would be visiting the State in the first week of September, the Congress leader is yet to firm up his dates.

In Rajasthan too, the issue of Cabinet expansion in the Ashok Gehlot government is pending.

Asked about it on September 16, AICC in-charge for the State Ajay Maken said the exercise would have been over if Chief Minister Gehlot has not been unwell and had to undergo angioplasty.


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Printable version | Oct 25, 2021 11:49:13 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/is-chhattisgarh-going-to-be-next-to-see-leadership-change/article36541451.ece

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