The outgoing Congress president Sonia Gandhi will continue to play an effective role and guide the destiny of the party, senior party leader M Veerappa Moily has said. The former Union minister lauded Gandhi’s leadership and referred to the “manner in which she brought together coalition arrangement” in 2004 and to a certain extent in 2009 while forming the UPA governments. “It was her greatest role of putting people together,” Moily told PTI. “She will continue to play an effective role even though she is not (Congress) president,” the former chief minister of Karnataka said, when asked if Gandhi would play a role to bring together like-minded opposition parties together to fight the BJP in 2019 parliamentary elections. Moily said she had “that kind of power to put coalitions together”. During her tenure, the Congress has regained power in “many states”, he said, and praised her “leadership” in the enactment of legislations, such as the RTI and Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MNREGS).
“She is always looked upon as mother of the party; not only mother to Rahul Gandhi (who is poised to take over as Congress president), but also mother to the party. She will continue to inspire and nurture the Congress,” Moily said. “She is just like patron to the party; she will continue to guide the destiny of the party,” he added. Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi had on December 4 filed his nomination papers for the post of party president, paving the way for a generational shift in the leadership of the party, headed by his mother Sonia Gandhi.