Sanjay Nirupam’s tweet on Saturday not only blamed Milind Deora for failing to perform his duties, but also holds him responsible for not being able to energise the cadres. Both Sanjay Nirupam and Milind Deora are former Mumbai Regional Congress Committee (MRCC) presidents.
t is an open secret that former Mumbai Regional Congress Committee (MRCC) presidents Sanjay Nirupam and Milind Deora, the two prominent faces of the Congress party in Mumbai, haven’t had the most cordial political relationship in the past. And now, just when the state assembly elections are around the corner, the ugly truth about their bitter relationship is out once again for everyone to see.
It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that this conflict has the potential to once again erupt into a big political drama which is sure to expose the increasing fault lines within the state Congress party and also the factionalism which could hurt the party prospects in an already competitive political scenario.
Sanjay Nirupam on Saturday took to Twitter and said, “Removal of Milind Deora as MRCC President is an appropriate decision taken by Congress because he was not able to perform and energise the cadre. Assembly elections are just 40 days away. The acting president must take everyone into confidence to give the Shiv Sena and BJP [Bharatiya Janata Party] a respectable fight.”
Nirupam’s tweet not only blamed Milind Deora for failing to perform his duties, but also held him responsible for not being able to energise the cadres.
It’s known to all that Sanjay Nirupam was shunted from the post of Mumbai Congress chief after the Deora camp mounted pressure on the central leadership right before the Lok Sabha polls.
Milind Deora then donned the hat of the chief. But the move expectedly backfired as the Congress couldn’t even manage a single seat in Mumbai in the Lok Sabha elections that followed. In 2009, the party had won all the six Lok Sabha seats in Mumbai.
Soon after the Lok Sabha debacle, Milind Deora resigned after Congress leader Rahul Gandhi quit as party chief taking responsibility of the Congress’s fall out.
Milind Deora is considered to be close to Rahul Gandhi and had then hinted at taking up a central role.
Sanjay Nirupam had reportedly commented on this too asserting that the resignation was simply a ladder to gain prominence at the centre and that he had ignored party work in Mumbai.
On September 6, the Congress appointed its new Mumbai chief.
“Congress president has approved the proposal for appointment of Eknath Gaikwad, working president, Mumbai Regional Congress Committee (MRCC) as the acting president of Mumbai Regional Congress Committee (MRCC) in place of Milind Deora,” a statement by the Congress said.
In a tweet, Milind Deora had said, “I am happy that my pending resignation as president of Mumbai Congress has been accepted. I am grateful to Congress for having been given the opportunity to serve Mumbai. I wish Gaikwad ji my very best.”
Political experts said that such infighting will not serve the party any good and at a time when the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) are already looking solid on paper and oiling their election machinery, the Congress needs to get its act together.
Many within the Congress party said that Sanjay Nirupam’s style of working wasn’t pleasing to all, especially his focus on the North Indian vote bank. But those who had hopes from Milind Deora, too have been disappointed with his resignation.
In the past, Milind Deora hasn’t directly confronted Sanjay Nirupam and often asked his supporters to ignore “comments from certain quarters”.
It will be interesting to see if Deora responds to the latest tweet from Nirupam.