September 30, 2022

New Delhi, Aug 21: Senior Congress leader Anand Sharma, who quit as the chief of the party panel for the upcoming Himachal Pradesh Assembly elections, on Sunday said that he had no choice but to resign “due to continuous insults and exclusion” while asserting he will remain a committed party member.

 

“I have resigned with a heavy heart from the Chairmanship of the Steering Committee of the Congress for the Himachal Elections. Reiterating that I am a lifelong congressman and remain firm on my convictions.

“Committed to Congress ideology that runs in my blood, let there be no doubts about this! However, given the continuing exclusion and insults, as a self-respecting person- I was left with no choice” he said in a series of tweets.

Sources close to Sharma said he has sent his letter to Congress President Sonia Gandhi after being sidelined from the working of the party unit in the state.

Rajeev Shukla, the party’s state in-charge, has not commented on the issue, and Congress sources said they did not know about the development.

Sharma’s resignation comes in wake of Ghulam Nabi Azad quitting as the party’s J&K campaign committee head.

Along with Azad, Sharma is also among the prominent leaders of the G-23 group, which has demanded sweeping reforms in the party.

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The Congress President had, on April 26, appointed the Himachal Pradesh state Congress chief, the CLP leader and Chairman of Campaign Committee. The party had also announced eight other committees, including a Steering Committee with Sharma as Chairman and Asha Kumari as the convenor.

According to sources close to Sharma’s office, his letter said that the “multiplicity of committees and overlapping of functions required clarity for functional purposes” and he had requested the General Secretary, Organisation and the state in-charge to clarify the mandate and role of the Steering Committee.

The letter noted that meetings of state unit’s core group and senior leaders on election strategy and preparations had been held both in Delhi and Shimla, including a meeting of the state unit chief, the head of the Campaign Committee and other committees on June 20 and in early August, the state incharge and central AICC observers visited Shimla for various meetings. However, Sharma, as Chairman of the Steering Committee, was neither informed nor invited for any of these meetings, it said.