In a major organisational change, the All India Congress Committee, on Thursday, appointed Jai Prakash Agarwal, a veteran party leader and confidante of Gandhi family as the in-charge of Madhya Pradesh 14 months ahead of 2023 assembly polls.

He replaces AICC general secretary Mukul Wasnik and is likely to oversee the MP Congress’s campaign for the crucial assembly polls.

An AICC press release said Congress president Sonia Gandhi accepted the request of Wasnik to relieve him from his current responsibility, so that he could oversee other organisational matters.

Agarwal, 77, a four-time Lok Sabha MP form Delhi and also a former Rajya Sabha member, was the Delhi Congress president when Sheela Dikshit was the chief minister.

Considered to have strong organisational skills, Agarwal has been brought back in an active political role after quite a gap since his resignation as Delhi Congress chief after the party lost the Delhi polls.

MP Congress chief Kamal Nath welcomed the appointment of Agarwal as the state in-charge. “Heartiest greetings and best wishes to Jai Prakash Agarwal for being made the in-charge of Madhya Pradesh Congress by the AICC. I hope that Madhya Pradesh Congress will benefit from his organizational capabilities and the organization will become stronger and more dynamic,” he said.

Wasnik was appointed as AICC general secretary in-charge of Madhya Pradesh in April 2020, after Deepak Babaria resigned from the post, apparently in the wake of the collapse of the Kamal Nath led government in the state. However, Wasnik was never too active in the state. It was often pointed out that Wasnik was junior state Congress president and has been overshadowed by Kamal Nath.

The change in guard, coming amidst the ambitious ‘Bharat Jodo’ campaign of the Congress, is being looked upon as an important step towards election strategy in Madhya Pradesh.   

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