Bhupinder Singh Hooda and Captain Amarinder Singh

Seven months after the worst ever defeat in the Lok Sabha polls and an abysmal performance in state elections, Congress leaders are getting restive about their high command more particularly about vice president Rahul Gandhi. Speculations are rife, that two important party leaders of North Indian states have expressed displeasure at being bypassed in party decisions and are actively considering to leave the party. Notables among them are former Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda and Captain Amarinder Singh, who is also former chief minister of Punjab. Speculations are rife within party circles, that both these leaders might be preparing ground to leave party. It is believed that Capt Singh, who failed to oust state Congress unit chief Pratap Singh Bajwa is now consulting his colleagues to float a regional party.But the party is worried more about the plans of Bhupinder Singh Hooda, who had been allegedly protecting Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law Robert Vadra on his improper land deals. Hooda had organised a workers’ meeting at Rohtak as a sort of revolt against state Congress chief Ashok Tanwar, a Rahul Gandhi protege, and Congress legislature party leader Kiran Chaudhry. At the Congress headquarters, this meeting is seen as a warning signal from Hooda that the leadership cannot ignore him to promote other leaders in the state.The cause of worry for the leadership is that 14 of the 15 sitting Congress MLAs in the state, turned up at the meeting to be counted as part of the Hooda camp. The former chief minister’s supporters say they may be even compelled to launch a new political party if Hooda is ignored and others are promoted who have neither the mass base nor the organisational support.Having remained the chief minister for two terms, Hooda was seen telling senior Congress leaders during his frequent trips to the Parliament House, last month, that he has nursed the party all his life and hence if the party wants a new face as the future CM, it can be his MP son Deepender and no one else.While in the neighbouring state of Punjab, Congress leaders there say, due to infighting and promotion of some leaders without any mass base, the party was unable to take the advantage of anti-incumbency wave against the Akali-BJP combine government. Capt Amarinder, who is a contender for the PPCC post is baying the blood of Pratap Singh Bajwa. During his visit to Punjab two months ago, Rahul had snubbed the Captain along with other dissidents for raising a revolt against Bajwa.

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Bhupinder Singh Hooda, Amarinder Singh may quit Congress, form new party