Prime News, National (New Delhi), December 11:- National Congress Party (NCP) on Thursday rubbished media reports suggesting its party chief Sharad Pawar emerging as the frontrunner to replace Sonia Gandhi as the next UPA chairperson.
“There’re unsubstantiated reports in media regarding NCP president Sharad Pawar taking over as chairperson of UPA. Nationalist Congress Party would like to clarify that there is no discussion within UPA partners regarding any such proposal,” Mahesh Tapase, NCP Chief Spokesperson, said.
“The reports appearing in the media seem to have been planted by vested interest to divert the attention from the ongoing farmers’ agitation,” Tapase added.
The reaction from the NCP came after media reports suggested that veteran Maharashtra politician Sharad Pawar has emerged as the front-runner to replace Sonia Gandhi as the next UPA chairperson.
Reports said that Sonia Gandhi is unwilling to continue as the UPA chief due to her poor health and has also not been very active in mainstream politics. In such a scenario, Pawar – the Grand Old Man from Maharashtra – may be the obvious choice to lead the Congress-led alliance after she formally quits.
Pawar, being a seasoned politician, is highly respected among the UPA allies and wields considerable clout in his home state of Maharashtra.
A section of Congress leaders is reported to be of the view that Pawar should be made the chairperson of the UPA since Rahul Gandhi has apparently refused to take over as Congress president again and is unwilling to succeed his mother as UPA Chairperson as well.
It may be recalled that Sonia Gandhi was forced to become the interim president after Rahul Gandhi resigned as party president after the Lok Sabha poll debacle.
In such a scenario, a section of Congress leaders think that Rahul Gandhi may be projected as the main face of the UPA but Sharad Pawar should take over as the chairman of UPA, being its senior-most leader. (MR, Inputs: Agencies).