A fortnight after he resigned as AICC general secretary, Gurudas Kamat on Thursday took back his resignation, ostensibly after assurances from the high command that he would have a say in party affairs in Mumbai.
In a statement, Kamat said that during the last fortnight several senior party leaders tried to convince him to rethink his decision.
“My meeting with Sonia Gandhi helped me make up my mind that the Congress is the best platform to serve the people of this country. I will continue to serve under the leadership of Congress president Sonia Gandhi and vice-president Rahul Gandhi with the same charge of Gujarat, Rajasthan, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Daman and Diu, as informed to me late last night,” he said.
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After resigning, Kamat never intended to join any other party or form his own outfit, like many of his former colleagues. His resignation was rather an expression of unhappiness with his sidelining in the party stronghold of Mumbai, of which he was president over the last decade, allegedly by Sanjay Nirupam. Also, the Mumbai municipal corporation election is due next year, before which he had to flex his muscle.
Kamat has resigned from party posts at least four times in the past. In the 1980s, he quit as Maharashtra Youth Congress president, and in 2011 as Union minister when he was given the drinking water and sanitation portfolio. He had expected a cabinet rank.
Those close to Kamat say he takes decisions based on emotion. His critics say it is nothing but a blackmailing tactic. Whatever the case, Kamat has again succeeded in getting his way, but at a time when the party is at its lowest ebb.
From the day he announced his resignation, old-timers in the party have been suggesting that it is a matter of time before Kamat returns. Kamat, in fact, met Sonia recently. Nirupam was also in Delhi last week for talks with the high command.