Sonia retiring only as President, not from politics : Congress


India is changing and Sonia over the last 4-5 years has taken a backseat and also with her health deteriorating her participation in the party affairs has been quite limited one.

Sonia Gandhi on Friday retired as Congress President.

The opposition questioned the Election Commission for adopting a double standard after the poll body did not bar Prime Minister Narendra Modi's roadshow, but sent a notice to Congress president-elect Rahul Gandhi for an interview.

Briefing media about the voter turnout in the second phase, Senior Deputy Election Commissioner Umesh Sinha said "No FIR has been lodged against Rahul Gandhi".

Although she is stepping down from her position in the party, Sonia is not retiring from politics and will continue as the member of the parliament, Indian media quoted Congress sources as saying. The party questioned the Commission's decision on the ground that it did not initiate action against newschannels for airing BJP President Amit Shah's interview and union minister Piyush Goyal's press conference the same day. She said the leader would always be there to steer the party in the right direction. She was the longest serving Congress president but was keeping unwell for quite sometime.

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"My role now is to retire", Sonia Gandhi told NDTV. Rahul remained as the General Secretary till January 2013, when he was elevated to the post of Congress Vice President.

The Congress also petitioned the poll body for action against Prime Minister Narendra Modi for addressing an event organised by an industry body on the eve of the final phase of the Gujarat polls where he attacked the main opposition party.

Congress party workers let off firecrackers and cheered as they celebrated the announcement.

With the exit polls predication showing BJP's win, Rahul is likely to begin his party's presidency with two new electoral defeats.

Since the national election defeat, the party has lost polls in many states to the BJP, exposing him to further criticism.