Senior Congress Leaders echo each others' discontent against Leadership

Shashi Tharoor

After a massive defeat in the Delhi elections, the Congress leaders have started questioning the Congress Working Committee (CWC). On February 20 Senior MP Shashi Tharoor also urged the CWC to hold leadership elections to energise party workers.

Crux of the Matter

Shashi Tharoor, Congress MP from Thiruvananthapuram, tweeted his views by quoting former MP and Sheila Dikshit’s son Sandeep Dikshit who had openly criticised the Congress leadership.

I’m actually feeling rather dismayed by our senior leaders. Most of them have been former chief ministers, even some of our current CMs who are very senior, I think it is time for them to come up and go the extra mile for their party.

– Sandeep Dikshit

The Congress had ruled Delhi for three consecutive terms till 2013 with Sheila Dikshit as Chief Minister. Not only could they not win even a single seat in the recent elections but also its candidates lost their deposits in 63 seats.

In the previous week, Jairam Ramesh compared the Delhi result to ‘coronavirus’ for the Congress and had said that some in the party still behave like ministers even after six years out of power.

Former Union Minister Manish Tewari had recently said that the party needs to think about reorienting its economic philosophy which continues to be fairly socialistic and bring clarity on the question of secularism and its brand of nationalism. Senior leaders like Jyotiraditya Scindia also have suggested that the party needs to reinvent itself.

Sandeep Dikshit in an interview said that the party’s biggest challenge was the leadership question. He said that Rahul Gandhi had asked senior leaders to elect a new president but they failed. It is time for Amarinder Singh, Ashok Gehlot, Kamal Nath, AK Antony, P Chidambaram, Salman Khurshid, Ahmed Patel to intellectually contribute and get into leadership selection. He said, “there are at least six-eight Congress leaders capable of leading the party, but sometimes you want inaction because you don’t want a certain action to happen”.

After the Delhi results a large section of Congress leaders reacted by openly congratulating Aam Aadmi Party and Arvind Kejriwal for defeating the BJP. The other section of Congress lamented its own leaders praising a rival party that grew at the cost of the Congress.


The Congress Working Committee (CWC) is the executive committee of the Indian National Congress formed in December 1920 at Nagpur session of INC which was headed by C. Vijayaraghavachariar. It typically consists of fifteen members elected from the All India Congress Committee. It is headed by the Working President which currently is Sonia Gandhi. In the period prior to independence in 1947, the Working Committee was the centre of power, and the Working President was frequently more active than the Congress President. In the period after 1967, when the Congress Party split for the first time the power of the Working Committee declined; but Indira Gandhi’s triumph in 1971 led to a re-centralisation of power away from the states and the All-India Congress Committee and caused the Working Committee in Delhi to once again be the paramount decision-making body of the party. More Info

SC Orders Review On Imposed Restrictions in J&K

A three-judge SC bench comprising Justices NV Ramana, R Subhash Reddy, and BR Gavai gave its verdict on pleas filed by Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad to challenge restrictions imposed in J&K. SC ordered the Jammu & Kashmir administration to review all restrictive orders within a week.

Crux of the Matter
  • The Supreme Court said that any order that has been passed to suspend internet services in J&K will be subject to judicial scrutiny.
  • SC ordered J&K administration to review all restrictive orders within a week and asked to put all orders in the public domain which can then be challenged in a court of law.
  • SC also said the suspension of the internet for an indefinite period is not permissible and Freedom of speech and expression under Article 19(1)(a) of the Constitution includes Right to Internet.
  • On the use of Section 144 in the state SC said, “It cannot be used as a tool to oppress difference of opinion.”
  • The government had justified restrictions saying that it was done as a preventive measure and due to which neither a single life was lost nor a single bullet fired.
  • Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad said, “the government had tried to mislead the people and this time the apex court did not come under any pressure.”

Article 370 of the Indian constitution gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir. The article was drafted in Part XXI of the Constitution: Temporary, Transitional and Special Provisions. The Constituent Assembly of Jammu and Kashmir, after its establishment, was empowered to recommend the articles of the Indian constitution that should be applied to the state or to abrogate the Article 370 altogether. This article, along with Article 35A, defined that the Jammu and Kashmir state’s residents live under a separate set of laws, including those related to citizenship, ownership of property, and fundamental rights, as compared to residents of other Indian states. More Info

Ravi Shankar Prasad Asks all states to Implement CAA

Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad has said that all the states have a constitutional duty to implement laws passed by Parliament. He also asked the states that had rejected the bill to seek appropriate legal opinion on constitutional provisions.

Crux of the Matter
  • Kerala Assembly recently passed a resolution asking the Centre to withdraw CAA.
  • The Law Minister referring to Clause 2 of Article 245 of the Constitution he said that the Parliament could make laws on subjects under the Union List which included citizenship.
  • Mr Prasad said, “ it is surprising that those who have come to power by taking oath under the Constitution are now making unconstitutional statements”.
  • The Law Minister said the governments which claim they would not allow the CAA or were getting resolutions passed against implementing it might seek appropriate legal opinion on constitutional provisions.
  • Article 245 (2) states that no law made by Parliament shall be deemed to be invalid on the ground that it would have extra-territorial operation
  • States like Kerala, West Bengal, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan have openly denied implementing the CAA.

Territorial nexus is a concept described in Article 245 of the Constitution of India that determines how legislative powers are divided. “Article 245 provides, inter alia, that (subject to the provisions of the Constitution).

(i) Parliament may make laws for the whole or any part of the territory of India and (ii) the legislature of a State may make laws for the whole or any part of the State.

(b) Thus, article 245 sets out the limits of the legislative powers of the Union and the States from the geographical (or territorial) angle. From the point of view of the subject matter of legislation, it is article 246 which is important.

Maha Vikas Aaghadi gets 35 Ministers in Cabinet Expansion

The long-pending expansion of the Maha Vikas Aaghadi government took place on December 30 at the Vidhan Bhawan Complex. Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari administered the oath of office to 25 Cabinet Ministers and 10 Ministers of State (MoS)

Crux of the Matter
  • The Shiv Sena got 12 Ministers (8 Cabinet and 4 MoS), while the NCP took 13 Ministers, with 9 Cabinet and 4 MoS. The Congress has 10 Ministers (8 Cabinet and 2 MoS).
  • Ajit Pawar took oath as the Deputy Chief Minister after more than a month he had allied with the BJP to become the Deputy CM.
  • CM Uddhav Thackeray’s son and first-time MLA Aaditya Thackeray took oath as a cabinet minister.
  • Former CM Vilasrao Deshmukh’s son Amit Deshmukh took oath as a cabinet minister.
  • Cabinet has four Muslim Ministers, including, Nawab Malik, Hasan Mushrif, Aslam Sheikh and Abdul Sattar
  • Major names who took the oath included former CM Ashok Chavan, NCP’s Dilip Walse Patil, Jitendra Awhad, Vishwajit Kadam, Bacchu Kadu, Rajesh Tope, Varsha Gaikwad, Satej Patil, Vijay Vadettivar, Anil Deshmukh and Dr Rajendra Shingane and Sanjay Rathod.
  • CM Uddhav Thackeray said, “the portfolio allocation will be done in a day or two.
  • According to the power-sharing formula agreed on by the three parties, the Shiv Sena would have 16 ministers (apart from CM), NCP 14 and the Congress 12.

The Maha Vikas Aghadi is a political coalition formed after the 2019 Maharashtra Legislative Assembly election under the leadership of Sharad Pawar of the NCP, Uddhav Thackeray of SS and Sonia Gandhi of INC along with the support from the SP, PWPI, Prahar Janshakti Party and several other political parties including Independent MLAs. Uddhav Thackeray was elected as a leader of the MVA after a meeting on 26 November 2019. He took the oath of the office and secrecy on 28 November 2019 as the 19th chief minister of Maharashtra state. The alliance was formed by non-NDA political parties in Maharashtra as a result of 2019 Maharashtra political crisis where the BJP and Shiv Sena failed to form a government due to differences on the position of the CM. More Info

JMM-Congress-RJD Alliance Sweep Jharkhand Assembly Polls

The results for the Jharkhand Assembly election results which were conducted in five phases were declared on December 23 and the pre-poll alliance of Jharkhand Mukti Morcha-Congress-RJD secured a landslide victory winning 47 seats in the 81 member Assembly. While the BJP managed to win only 25 seats.

Crux of the Matter
  • The final tally is Jharkhand Mukti Morcha – 30, INC – 16, BJP – 25, AJSU – 2, RJD – 1, JVM(P) – 3, Others – 4
  • CM Raghubar Das could not retain Jamshedpur East seat. He lost by a margin of 15,833 votes to Independent candidate BJP rebel Saryu Roy.
  • Raghubar Das tendered his resignation as Jharkhand CM to the Governor Droupadi Murmu and said, “People’s mandate has not been in favour of the Bharatiya Janata Party but whatever has been the verdict of the people, we respect it.”
  • Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) leader and the CM elect Hemant Soren won from both the seats he contested. He won the Barhait constituency by a margin of 25,740 votes and the Dumka seat by a margin of 13,188 votes.
  • He secured 73,534 and 80,589 votes by defeating BJP’s Lois Marandi and Simon Malto in Barhait and Dumka respectively.
  • Hemant Soren said, “I am thankful to the people of Jharkhand for the mandate.”
  • Home Minister Amit Shah tweeted saying, “BJP respects the mandate of Jharkhand’s voters and it is committed to the development of the state.”

Hemant Soren born on 10 August 1975 is an Indian politician in Jharkhand, a state in eastern India. Soren was born in Nemara in Ramgarh district, Jharkhand. He has two brothers and a sister. His educational qualification is Intermediate from Patna High School, Patna. He studied Mechanical Engineering in BIT Mesra, Ranchi but failed to complete the course. He has served as the 5th Chief Minister of Jharkhand. He was sworn in as the Chief Minister of Jharkhand on 15 July 2013. He was a member of Rajya Sabha from 24 June 2009 to 4 January 2010. More Info