Days after he rallied behind Rahul Gandhi, saying the former party president enjoys full support of Congress leaders, senior leader Salman Khurshid on Sunday said there was no urgency to elect a president. Khurshid, who is considered close to the Gandhi family, backed Sonia Gandhi and said she should be the one to decided the leadership issue.

“For people like me, we already have leaders, we have a leader in Mrs Sonia Gandhi, we have a leader in Rahul Gandhi. So for me there is no sense of urgency about electing leaders. Electing a president, yes that will happen when it happens, I can’t see the heavens falling down. What is the sense of urgency that is being expressed, is not clear to me,” Khurshid told news agency PTI.

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The 67-year-old leader’s statement assumes significance as it shows a clear divide within the Congress. Khurshid also questioned the ‘group of 23’ leaders who had sent a ‘dissent’ letter to Sonia Gandhi calling for a “full time, active and visible” leadership”. The letter has triggered a massive debate during the Congress Working Committee (CWC) last week with Rahul Gandhi expressing open resentment against senior leaders like Ghulam Nabi Azad.

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“It is very clear that the important persons in this letter do belong to the top echelons of our party and therefore Mrs Gandhi has indicated that it was best that they could have discussed it within the confines of the party,” Salman Khurshid said.