New Delhi, October 22: Former Finance Minister and senior party leader P Chidambaram on Monday said that Congress will not project its president Rahul Gandhi or any other leader as the prime ministerial candidate in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.
The interesting revelation was made by Chidambaram during an interview with News18 Tamil.
“We never said that we want Rahul Gandhi to be prime minister. When few Congressmen were talking about it, the AICC intervened and stop such talk. We want the BJP to be ousted. In its place, we want to see an alternative government which is progressive, respects freedom of individuals, doesn’t indulge in tax terrorism, gives protection to women and children, and uplifts farmers,” he was quoted as saying.
He also admitted that regional parties have affected the vote share of both the BJP and the Congress.
The Congress has been making attempts to stitch a grand alliance with anti-BJP opposition parties in its bid to dethrone the NDA government at the Centre.
The minister also accused the BJP government of adopting “threatening tactics” to keep regional parties from forming an alliance with the Congress.
“We want an alliance to be formed. The Prime minister will be decided by the alliance partners after the election,” he added.
The Congress leader’s statement comes days after Rahul Gandhi said he will become prime minister if allies want him to.
The Congress has formed a two-stage process for the 2019 polls – one is to get together and defeat BJP and stage two is the decision on who will be the Prime Minister.
In a major setback, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) supremo Mayawati recently announced that her party will not form an alliance with the Congress for the upcoming Assembly elections in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. (Agencies)