It was the time for Sonia Gandhi to step down and pass on the baton. She bid adieu to her post as the Congress president on Friday (Dec 15) as Rahul Gandhi officially takes over the position, today.

Party chief spokesperson, Randeep Singh Surjewala, took to Twitter, confirming Sonia’s retirement. He has also clarified that she only retired from the post of president and not from politics.

READ: Ten Things That Make Sonia Gandhi A True Leader

“Smt Sonia Gandhi has retired as President of Indian National Congress and not from politics. Her blessings, wisdom and innate commitment to Congress ideology shall always be our guiding light,” Surjewala tweeted.

Sonia (70), was elected to the post in 1998, has been the longest-serving president of the party.

The leader due to her foreign origin had faced numerous challenges in the initial days. Sharad Pawar and P A Sangma resigned and Jitendra Prasada challenged her for the post in 2001. However, with the Italian woman entering Indian politics, and her strong willpower and clever strategies at the helm, the Congress at one point was ruling as many as 16 states.

ALSO READ: India is my home: Sonia Gandhi’s emotional response to identity politics

Rahul Gandhi, formally took over in a ceremony in New Delhi attended by Sonia and other party leaders.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi had congratulated the Gandhi scion, on his election, and wished him for a “fruitful tenure”. Rahul, in reply, thanked him by saying, “A heartfelt thank you to everyone for the tremendous support and good wishes you have showered on me. It is an honour for me to work for the ideals of the Congress party and through it for our great country.”

Feature Picture credit- News X

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