Cong appoints a Brahmin as Bihar unit president

Cong appoints a Brahmin as Bihar unit president

Legislator Madan Mohan Jha. (Image courtesy Twitter/Congress)

Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday picked prominent Brahmin leader Madan Mohan Jha as the president of the party's Bihar unit, signalling a move to win back its key support base in the state.

Rahul also appointed four working presidents for the Bihar unit – Dr Ashoki Kumar, Kaukab Quadri, Sameer Kumar Singh and Shyam Sunder (Dhiraj) – in the state that is known to vote on caste lines.

Rajya Sabha MP Akhilesh Prasad Singh, who was also in contention for the state president's post, has been named the chairman of the campaign committee for Bihar, AICC general secretary Ashok Gehlot said in a statement.

Jha is a member of the Bihar Legislative Council and was also a minister in the "Grand Alliance" government in the state.

Rahul also approved a proposal to constitute a 23-member PCC Working Committee and a 19-member PCC Advisory Committee for Bihar.

With 40 Lok Sabha seats, Bihar is crucial to the Congress' revival plans and Jha's appointment is seen as an attempt to woo the Brahmin community that forms almost 8% of the total electorate. The community had been key supporters of the Congress but shifted loyalties to the BJP after the emergence of Lalu Prasad.

The reshuffle of the Bihar unit of the Congress was long overdue after the then party national president Sonia Gandhi sacked Ashok Choudhary as PCC chief in September last year and appointed Quadri as the interim chief.