The Congress committee on Monday issued guidelines for its party leaders ahead of the party's crucial presidential polls. The party warned that if any leader wishes to campaign for either of the candidates - Shashi Tharoor or Mallikarjun Kharge - they have to resign from their organisational post first.
The Congress high command, rooting for 'neutral polls', also said in the notice that all security will be ensured for a 'fair election'. "Utmost care will be taken to ensure that there is no mala-fide campaign against any candidate," the letter further read.
The polling for the Congress presidential election will be held on October 17. The counting of votes will be taken up on October 19 and the results will be declared the same day. More than 9,000 Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) delegates will vote in the poll.
The two senior leaders who are going head to head in the polls have geared up with campaigns. Tharoor even said he is ready for an 'open debate'.
While the Gandhis promised both Tharoor and the party that a "neutral" poll is the goal and that there is no "official candidate" in the election, the situation seems to voice the other.
'Gandhis promised on 'neutral' Cong president polls': Tharoor amid talks of Kharge being 'favourite'
Kharge, on one hand, has the support of many party leaders - reportedly including Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi - and is emerging as the front-runner. Tharoor, meanwhile, is currently focused on his campaign #ThinkTomorrowThinkTharoor with little support.