Cong open to Mamata, Maya as PM candidate

New Delhi: The Congress is ready to accept any candidate from among the Opposition as the next prime minister who does not have the backing of the RSS, party sources said on Tuesday.

To prevent the BJP from coming back to power in 2019, the Congress will look to cobble up alliances with various parties in states, they said.

On whether Congress President Rahul Gandhi will step aside for a woman candidate from a possible Opposition alliance, the sources said he “is comfortable seeing any prime minister other than an RSS-backed one”. Let’s see how the dice rolls, the sources said.

According to the sources, the Congress leadership is of the view that the BJP will be decimated without any “anger and disrespect”. The BJP will not get enough seats to win the next general polls as parties like the TDP, the Shiv Sena are not happy with the saffron party, the sources added.

For Narendra Modi to be the prime minister again, he has to get seats in the range of 280 and that is not going to happen, they said. The sources said if grand alliances in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar work out fine, then it will be difficult for Modi.

They claimed that Modi is desperate to win the 2019 polls as he fears that the RSS as also agencies like the CBI will be after him if he is out of power.

INC for women’s representation

There is speculation in the Opposition camp that a woman prime ministerial candidate may be projected in the next elections and names of BSP leader Mayawati and TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee are doing the rounds.
Noting that the Congress is focussing on increasing women’s representation in the party, the sources said women leaders will be appointed in general secretary level posts after they gain experience.