Union Minister Ramdas Athawale (L) and Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi (R)
Union Minister Ramdas Athawale (L) and Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi (R) | ANI File Photos
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Indore: Union Minister Ramdas Athawale said that Sonia Gandhi should have become the prime minister when the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) had first come to power in the year 2004 and that the Congress party under Rahul Gandhi cannot grow.

Addressing a press conference here on Saturday, Athawale said: “When Sonia Gandhi was elected to the Lok Sabha, I had proposed to the UPA that she should be made the prime minister. When Congress was in majority, she was the capable candidate to come to power. But now, the party cannot grow under the leadership of Rahul Gandhi,” he added.

The Union Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment and the President of Republican Party of India (RPI) said “If Kamala Harris can become the Vice-president of America, then why could not Sonia Gandhi a citizen of India, wife of Rajiv Gandhi and elected Lok Sabha MP, become the Prime Minister.”

He also said that if Sonia Gandhi was not willing to accept the PM’s post then she should have made Sharad Pawar, the next best-suitable candidate as PM instead of Manmohan Singh.

“If Sharad Pawar had been made the prime minister instead of Manmohan Singh earlier, then the condition of Congress would not have been so bad. The party had insulted Pawar many times,” Athawale said.

The minister further suggested that Pawar and BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis should form a coalition government with his RPI party in Maharashtra. He also extended the proposal of the alliance towards Shiv Sena too.

“Nowadays Shiv Sena is being targetted by Congress, so the party can form a coalition with my party. Following this, Uddhav Thackeray and Fadnavis can assume the post of chief minister for 2.5 years each. If they both do not agree, then I can become the chief minister,” Athawale said.

Speaking on the speculations of former Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh joining BJP-led NDA, Athawale said that Punjab Congress has insulted its leader in the past few days which led to his resignation.

Athawala also appealed to Amarinder Singh to join the BJP’s National Democratic Alliance.
“No other party can benefit Captain now. He should join BJP-led NDA because it is the only option that will benefit him,” Athawale said.

Amarinder Singh recently resigned as Chief minister of Punjab after a prolonged power tussle in the state unit of the Congress with infighting between him and Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) chief Navjot Singh Sidhu.

Also read: Does India matter? Yes, Kamala Harris’s ‘sermon’ to Modi reminds him why


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