Lucknow, (Asian independent) Former Congress MP from Unnao, Annu Tandon, left the party on Thursday citing differences with the state unit, causing a setback for the party ahead of the bypolls in Bangarmau which falls in Unnao district. The party candidate for Bangarmau is Arti Vajpayee.
Vajpayee is the daughter of Gopinath Dikshit, former Home Minister of UP and related to late Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit. The exit of Tandon has surprised many in the party as she was considered close to the party top brass.
Sources in the Congress said that Tandon was upset for not getting a free hand in the functioning of the party in Unnao, and felt sidelined after the appointment of the new office bearers in the district Congress committee.
Congress sources claimed that the party is on the verge of winning the Bangarmau seat provided that the equations in the elections are in favour of the party.
The Congress leaders said that Tandon was wary of the outcome of the bypoll results, so she left the party. They also alleged that she is now helping the BJP.
Tandon has blamed the state leadership for her decision to quit and said that she had met Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and had discussed issues with her but the talks proved futile.
In her letter to interim Congress President Sonia Gandhi, Tandon said that she had worked for the Congress for 15 years as a party worker and as an MP from Unnao.
She regretted the fact that she could not establish communication with the state leadership that remained uncooperative.
“Losing the 2019 elections was not as hurtful as the fact that the party in Uttar Pradesh is disintegrating and the party high command is not taking effective steps to redeem the situation. The state leadership is only concerned with social media management and personal branding,” she stated.
She said that she and her supporters were victims of a misinformation campaign being led by nondescript people in the party.
“I remained in the Congress because I believed that things would change for the better and a new leadership would emerge. I have spoken to a number of other leaders and they share my sentiments and feelings,” she said.
Tandon said that she would discuss with her supporters before deciding on the future course of action.
Her resignation has reportedly given a voice to resentment that has been simmering within the party over Priyanka Gandhi’s style of functioning and her over-dependence on leaders who do not subscribe to the Congress ideology.