Congress to get first non-Gandhi president in 24 years today

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The Congress will get its first non-Gandhi president in 24 years tody after more than 9,500 votes cast to choose between senior leaders Mallikarjun Kharge and Shashi Tharoor are counted to cap the election contest, the sixth in its 137-year-old history.

While Kharge is considered the firm favourite with his perceived proximity to the Gandhis and a large number of senior leaders backing him, Tharoor has pitched himself as the candidate of change. The process of bringing all the ballot boxes from the 68 polling booths set up across the country by the party will be completed by Tuesday. The sealed boxes will be kept in a “strong room” at the party headquarter.

The sealed ballot boxes will be opened before the candidates’ agents and the votes will be mixed repeatedly as they are added from various boxes. Of the total 9,915 Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) delegates that formed the electoral college to pick the party chief in a secret ballot, over 9,500 cast their ballot at PCC offices and the AICC headquarters.

It is the sixth time in its nearly 137-year-old history that an electoral contest is deciding who would take up the mantle of the party’s president as successor to Sonia Gandhi.

 

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