Rahul Gandhi hold talks with party MLAs, indicates handing over leadership to former Punjab CM Amarinder Singh

Amid talks of restructuring Punjab Congress unit, party vice president Rahul Gandhi on Thursday met some legislators from the state and indicated that he was open to the idea of handing over the party reins to former chief minister Amarinder Singh.

Punjab: Rahul Gandhi hold talks with party MLAs, indicates handing over leadership to former CM Amarinder Singh

During one-to-one meetings with six legislators, Rahul sought their views on whom to hand over the party reins who could help the Congress bring to power in the state.

Among the legislators who met Gandhi today include CLP leader Sunil Jakhar, Rana Gurjit Singh, Sukhjinder Randhawa, Ramanjit Singh Sikki, Sadhu Singh Dharamsot (all Amarinder loyalists) and Lal Singh.

Sources said Rahul stressed on the importance of unity while the MLAs admitted of a “significant” change in Rahul s attitude towards Amarinder.

Both Sonia Gandhi and Rahul have earlier held several rounds of discussions with various party leaders including Amarinder Singh ahead of its restructuring.

Congress sources said Rahul will meet the other party MLAs from Punjab again on October 12.

The Congress leadership is learnt to be keen on holding another round of consultations with the party leaders from Punjab before taking a final decision on the long pending matter.

The meetings come in the wake of reports of Amarinder Singh not happy with the arrangements worked out by the party after detailed consultations with party leaders.

Sources said Amarinder is not satisfied with the arrangements and wants the command in his hands to steer the party to victory in the 2017 assembly polls.

Top sources said the Congress leadership was toying with the idea of naming former union minister and senior Congress leader Ambika Soni as Punjab Congress chief, replacing Pratp Singh Bajwa, to end differences in the unit.

A section, however, wants Amarinder to be handed over the command ahead of polls.

Congress has lost out to the ruling Akali-BJP combine in the state twice in 2007 and 2012 and is keen to wrest back power.

Singh has been seeking the replacement of Punjab Congress President Partap Singh Bajwa for a long time now, and has repeatedly told the party to take a quick decision in the light of 2017 state elections.

The party hopes to involve everyone in the reorganization process while giving Capt Amarinder a key role.

The Congress leadership is learnt to be awaiting for Capt Amarinder’s return from abroad before taking a decision.