Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi on Monday filed his nomination for the post of the Congress President.
Experts suggest the 47-year-old leader of the party could win the election unopposed. That would become clear only on Tuesday, when the Central Election Committee (CEC) scrutinises the nomination paper.
If no other candidate files nomination, Gandhi could be declared the winner unopposed on December 11.
If he faces competition, the election will be held on December 16. The votes will be counted and the result will be declared on December 19.
The 131-year old political party has its own constitution which has laid down elaborate procedure to elect its President. Here’s how the ‘Grand Old Party’ of India, elects its highest leader:
Top leaders of the party are members of a top executive body called the Congress Working Committee (CWC).
Following a meeting of the CWC, the party’s election committee sets an election schedule.
All members of the Pradesh Congress Committees are delegates to the party according to Article XII of the party’s constitution.
It takes ten delegates of the party to jointly propose any other delegate’s name for the post of the party President. The term of the Congress president is five years.
As delegates from across the country can nominate a fellow delegate, about 50-55 sets of nomination papers are expected to be filed on his behalf, media reports suggest.
After declaration of the election procedure, delegates can file their nominations according to the specified date. The nominations are then scrutinised and a final list of candidates is published.
After which, candidates are given a seven-day window to withdraw their nomination if they wish to do so.
In a situation where only one candidate is contesting the election, he or she is declared the winner.
The president officially takes charge starting from the All India Congress Committee (AICC) plenary session. Till the plenary session, the winner is called as the ‘President-elect’.
In a situation where there are multiple candidates, the winner has to secure more than 50 percent of the total votes from AICC delegates.
Party rules state that, if in case, no candidate is able to secure more than 50 percent votes as the first preference, the second preferences would be counted.
If the election process is disrupted due to any unforeseen circumstance, the CWC has the power to appoint a provisional President till the time, the process is completed.