New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Congress leader Shashi Tharoor on Sunday said that there is a growing public perception that the party is "adrift and rudderless", adding that the process of finding a full-term president must be expedited in order to contain that. The remarks of the Congress leader came on a day when Congress announced that Sonia Gandhi, whose tenure as interim chief will end on August 10, will continue to lead the party till the time a "proper procedure" is implemented to elect a new chief.

"I certainly believe we should be clear about our leadership going forward. I welcomed Sonia ji's appointment as interim president last year, but I do believe it's unfair to her to expect her to carry this burden indefinitely," Tharoor told news agency PTI in an interview.

"We also need to arrest the growing public perception, fuelled by a dismissive media, that the Congress is adrift and rudderless, incapable of taking up the challenge of a credible national Opposition," the former Union minister said.

The Congress Lok Sabha MP exuded confidence in Rahul Gandhi and said that the Wayanad MP has the "mettle, capability and aptitude to once again lead the party". Tharoor, however, added that if he does not wish to take up the leadership role, then the party must take action to find a new president.

Earlier in the day, Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said that while the tenure of Sonia Gandhi as interim chief of the Grand Old Party will end on August 10, it did not mean post automatically falls vacant that day.

"Sonia Gandhi is the president, she will continue till such time as a proper procedure is implemented and it will be implemented in the not too distant future," he told reporters in an online news briefing.

Rahul Gandhi had quit as Congress president following the party's abysmal performance in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. After Rahul Gandhi's exit, the post fell vacant for several months before Sonia Gandhi took up the mettle on August 10, 2019.

Posted By: Shashikant Sharma