NEW DELHI : Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia on Sunday said that party Vice President Rahul Gandhi "can definitely match" Prime Minister Narendra Modi and is perfectly capable of leading both the party and the nation. Speaking at the Aaj Tak Editors Round-table, Scindia said: "Rahul Gandhi has tremendous capability, he has a deep core understanding of grassroot issues..."
He added: "I personally believe Rahul Gandhi is well equipped to lead this party and lead the nation. Just give him some time."
"Rahul Gandhi can definitely match Modi. He will challenge Modi and the Congress will go to people with the blueprint that the party and Rahul Gandhi are working on... I feel that we should move ahead under his leadership. We will form government in 2019 under his leadership."
In response to a question on Scindia taking over as Leader of Congress in the Lok Sabha, replacing Mallikarjun Kharge, he said: "What fate has in store..., what strategy the party has, is something I am not privy to."
Recounting his experience in politics in the past 15 years, the Congress leader said: "I am a worker of the Congress party, I have always had that belief."
He did admit that his party required a new blueprint, and there was a need to focus on states where Congress can bounce back.
"We need to go back to the drawing board, there are a lot of good things we did in last ten years, but obviously not enough to regain the trust of the people. We need to go back with a new blueprint," he said.
Scindia also said that unlike in the past, when a strong Centre built strong states, the situation has reversed.
"Earlier, you had a strong Centre which would build strong states. Now you need strong states to build a strong Centre. I think that is the recalibration of strategy that must take place in the Congress," he said.
Asked about the opposition's choice of candidate for the Presidential poll in July, Scindia said Congress was trying to evolve a consensus among all opposition parties on a common candidate.
"We want to get one consensus candidate from all opposition parties. Discussions are on, Congress cannot take the decision alone," he said.
Asked if President Pranab Mukherjee can be their candidate, he said: "The President has made it clear, he will contest only if all parties arrive at a consensus."
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