- Charan Das Mahant Named Leader of Congress Legislative Party in Chhattisgarh
- Congress President Kharge Approves Mahant’s Appointment Amidst Electoral Setback
- Deepak Baij Continues as Chhattisgarh Pradesh Congress Committee President
- Mahant, Veteran Politician and Former Speaker Takes Charge as Leader of the Opposition
In the aftermath of a significant defeat in the recent Chhattisgarh assembly elections, the Congress party has appointed Charan Das Mahant, a seasoned leader and former speaker of the Chhattisgarh assembly, as the leader of its legislative party in the state. This decision, approved by Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge, comes in the wake of a challenging electoral outcome where the BJP emerged victorious.
Charan Das Mahant, a fifth-term MLA and Leader of the Opposition in the state assembly retained the Sakti seat by defeating BJP’s Khilawan Sahu by 12,395 votes in the recent elections. Hailing from the Other Backward Class (OBC) community, Mahant was a prominent contender for the Chhattisgarh chief minister post in 2018, alongside leaders like Bhupesh Baghel, TS Singh Deo, and Tamradhwaj Sahu.
A political stalwart, Mahant’s political journey includes three terms as an MLA in undivided Madhya Pradesh, where he served as the Home and Public Relations Department Minister from 1995 to 1998. Additionally, he was elected as a member of the Lok Sabha thrice (1998, 1999, 2009) and served as Union Minister of State for Agriculture and Food Processing in the Manmohan Singh-led UPA government in 2011.
Despite his leadership roles, Mahant faced challenges in bringing the Congress party to power in Chhattisgarh during the 2008 and 2013 assembly elections. He also served as the Chhattisgarh Pradesh Congress Committee president in 2013 for a brief period.
Congress President Kharge has concurrently approved the continuation of Deepak Baij as the president of the Chhattisgarh Pradesh Congress Committee, as confirmed by AICC general secretary K C Venugopal. Baij, who lost in the recent assembly elections, remains at the helm of the state party unit.
The newly-elected Congress MLAs unanimously passed a resolution authorizing Kharge to choose the party’s leader in Chhattisgarh. As the political landscape undergoes shifts, the appointment of Charan Das Mahant signifies Congress’s strategic move in the state.