Congress Party Spokesperson Denies Gurudas Kamat Has Quit

08/06/2016 7:55 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:27 AM IST
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NEW DELHI, INDIA � NOVEMBER 2: Maharashtra Chief Minister Ashok Chavan and Minister of State for IT, Gurudas Kamat during the Meeting of All India Congress Committee (AICC) members at Talkatora Stadium in New Delhi on November 2, 2010. (Photo by Naveen Jora/India Today Group/Getty Images)

Congress today virtually rejected Gurudas Kamat's plans to quit politics, insisting that the senior leader is an "integral part of the Congress family" and party leadership would discuss with him his future role and responsibility.

"Kamat is a very seasoned and experienced leader. He is integral part of the Congress family. I categorically and squarely reject reports that he has resigned from the party".

"He was, is and will always remain a part of the Congress family. I am certain Congress leadership will discuss with him his future role and responsibility in the party so that it can benefit from his experience", party's chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala told PTI.

The statement from the AICC has come a day after the 61-year-old Congress general secretary announced that he was quitting active politics.

The move had come ahead of next year's Mumbai civic elections, where Congress is hoping to dislodge the incumbent Shiv Sena-BJP combine.

Surjewala's remarks came hours after Kamat made it clear today that he has the "highest respect and regard" for Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Vice President Rahul Gandhi and "my resignation is purely on personal grounds."

Yesterday, there was no reaction from the AICC over Kamat's sudden decision to quit active politics which had come as a bolt from the blue for the party.

Kamat, AICC general secretary incharge of Gujarat and Rajasthan, who had been Mumbai PCC chief for a long time, was reportedly unhappy over the appointment of his known detractor Sanjay Nirupam as the head of the city unit of the party.

Under his charge, Congress had done well in the local bodies polls in Gujarat and Rajasthan.

Meanwhile, Surjewala said that Rahul Gandhi is finalising plans for structural changes in the party and has talked to a large number of partymen at various levels on the road ahead.

Party leaders like Jairam Ramesh has already made a strong pitch for Rahul to take over the organisation.

A senior leader, however, remarked that changes in the organisation needed be carried out cautiously given the fact that those sitting in the AICC are "more powerful than the Syndicate" in the times of Indira Gandhi.

There has been no formal word on when the much talked about meeting of the Congress Working Committee will be held.

Meanwhile, former Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot said Gurudas Kamat's decision to quit from politics will give a wrong message.

"Congress party trusted him for 40 years, he got recognition due to the party and now he took this step which is unfortunate and gives a wrong message. Whatever Kamat has said about his retirement from the politics, he should have told the party president and vice president," Gehlot told reporters in Udaipur.

"Sudden retirement does not give a good message. Whatever he has done is unfortunate," he said.

Gehlot also paid homage to Maharana Pratap during his visit.

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