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List of presidents of the Indian National Congress

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The Indian National Congress is a political party in India with widespread roots.[1] Founded in 1885, it was the first modern nationalist movement to emerge in the British Empire in Asia and Africa.[a][2] From the late 19th century, and especially after 1920, under the leadership of Mahatma Gandhi, Congress became the principal leader of the Indian independence movement. Congress led India to independence from Great Britain,[b][3][c][4] and powerfully influenced other anti-colonial nationalist movements in the British Empire.[d][2]

President of the Indian National Congress
Sonia Gandhi (cropped).jpg
Incumbent
Sonia Gandhi

since 10 August 2019
Typepolitical office
Member of
Residence24, Akbar Road, New Delhi-110001
AppointerElectoral College
consisting the members of the Indian National Congress from the National and State Councils
Term lengthfour years
no term limit
Constituting instrumentConstitution of the Indian National Congress
FormationApril 1885
First holderWomesh Chandra Banerjee
(1885–1886)
Websitewww.inc.in

Congress is a secular party whose social democratic platform is generally considered to be on the centre-left of Indian politics.[5] Congress' social policy is based upon the Gandhian principle of Sarvodaya—the lifting up of all sections of society—which involves the improvement of the lives of economically underprivileged and socially marginalised people.[6][7] The party primarily endorses social democracy—seeking to balance individual liberty and social justice, welfare and secularism. Its constitution states democratic socialism to be its ideal.[8]

After the party's foundation in 1885, Womesh Chunder Bonnerjee became its first president.  A total of sixty one people have served as the president of the Indian National Congress.[9] Sonia Gandhi is the longest serving president of the Congress party, having held the office for nineteen years from 1998 to 2017.[10][11]

HistoryEdit

During 1885–1933, the presidency had a term of 1 year only. Traditionally, the post rotated between prominent members of the party, successive terms for the same person being frowned upon. During Jawaharlal Nehru's premiership, he rarely held the Presidency of INC, even though he was always head of the Legislative Party.[12]

Indira Gandhi however, institutionalized the practice of having the same person as the Congress President and the Prime Minister of India after she formed Congress (I) in 1978. Her son Rajiv Gandhi continued that practice.[13][14]

P. V. Narasimha Rao too held both the Congress (I) President and the Prime Minister's posts. Sitaram Kesri held the post after INC was voted out. But as the party never returned to power under his leadership, he didn't hold the two posts together.[15]

During 2000–09, INC did not host a conference for the first time in history. In 2004, when the INC was voted back into power, Manmohan Singh became the first Prime Minister, not to be the president of the party since Indira Gandhi established the practice of the president holding both positions. Sonia Gandhi is the longest serving president of the Congress party, having held the office for nineteen years from 1998 to 2017.[10][11] Her son Rahul Gandhi, the last Congress President, resigned from the post on 3 July 2019. On 10 August, the Congress Working committee, elected Sonia Gandhi as the interim President. The decision led to critics saying that the Gandhi family is refusing to loosen its grip on the party’s internal power structures.[16]

List of party presidentsEdit

No. Name of President Picture Life span Year of Presidency Place of Conference
1 Womesh Chandra Banerjee   29 December 1844 – 19 August 1906 1885 Bombay
2 Dadabhai Naoroji   4 September 1825 – 30 June 1917 1886 Calcutta
3 Badruddin Tyabji   10 October 1844 – 1906 1887 Madras
4 George Yule   1829–1892 1888 Allahabad
5 William Wedderburn   25 March 1838 – 25 January 1918 1889 Bombay
6 Pherozeshah Mehta   4 August 1845 – 5 November 1915 1890 Calcutta
7 Anandacharlu August 1843 – 1908 1891 Nagpur
8 Womesh Chunder Bonnerjee   29 December 1844 – 1906 1892 Allahabad
9 Dadabhai Naoroji   4 September 1825 – 1917 1893 Lahore
10 Alfred Webb   1834–1908 1894 Madras
11 Surendranath Banerjee   10 November 1848 – 6 August 1925 1895 Poona
12 Rahimtulla M. Sayani   5 April 1847 – 6 June 1902 1896 Calcutta
13 C. Sankaran Nair   11 July 1857 – 24 April 1934 1897 Amravati
14 Anandamohan Bose   23 September 1847 – 20 August 1906 1898 Madras
15 Romesh Chunder Dutt   13 August 1848 – 1909 1899 Lucknow
16 N. G. Chandavarkar   2 December 1855 – 1923 1900 Lahore
17 Dinshaw Edulji Wacha   2 August 1844 – 1936 1901 Calcutta
18 Surendranath Banerjee   10 November 1825 – 1917 1902 Ahmedabad
19 Lalmohan Ghosh 1848–1909 1903 Madras
20 Henry Cotton   1845–1915 1904 Bombay
21 Gopal Krishna Gokhale   9 May 1866 – 1915 1905 Benares
22 Dadabhai Naoroji   4 September 1825 – 1917 1906 Calcutta
23 Rashbihari Ghosh   23 December 1845 – 1921 1907 Surat
24 Rashbihari Ghosh   23 December 1845 – 1921 1908 Madras
25 Madan Mohan Malaviya   25 December 1861 – 1946 1909 Lahore
26 William Wedderburn   1838–1918 1910 Allahabad
27 Bishan Narayan Dar 1864–1916 1911 Calcutta
28 Raghunath Narasinha Mudholkar 1857–1921 1912 Bankipore
29 Nawab Syed Muhammad Bahadur ?–1919 1913 Karachi
30 Bhupendra Nath Bose   1859–1924 1914 Madras
31 Lord Satyendra Prasanna Sinha   March 1863 – 1928 1915 Bombay
32 Ambica Charan Mazumdar   1850–1922 1916 Lucknow
33 Annie Besant   1 October 1847 – 1933 1917 Calcutta
34 Madan Mohan Malaviya   25 December 1861 – 1946 1918 Delhi
35 Syed Hasan Imam   31 August 1871 – 1933 1918 Bombay (Special Session)
36 Motilal Nehru   6 May 1861 – 6 February 1931 1919 Amritsar
37 Lala Lajpat Rai   28 January 1865 – 17 November 1928 1920 Calcutta (Special Session)
38 C. Vijayaraghavachariar   1852 – 19 April 1944 1920 Nagpur
39 Chittaranjan Das (President)

Hakim Ajmal Khan (Acting President)

  1863 – 29 December 1927 1921 Ahmedabad
40 Chittaranjan Das   5 November 1870 – 16 June 1925 1922 Gaya
41 Mohammad Ali Jouhar   10 December 1878 – 4 January 1931 1923 Kakinada
42 Abul Kalam Azad   1888 – 22 February 1958 1923 Delhi (Special Session)
43 Mahatma Gandhi   2 October 1869 – 30 January 1948 1924 Belgaum
44 Sarojini Naidu   13 February 1879 – 2 March 1949 1925 Kanpur
45 S. Srinivasa Iyengar   11 September 1874 – 19 May 1941 1926 Gauhati
46 Mukhtar Ahmed Ansari   25 December 1880 – 10 May 1936 1927 Madras
47 Motilal Nehru   6 May 1861 – 6 February 1931 1928 Calcutta
48 Jawaharlal Nehru   14 November 1889 – 27 May 1964 1929 & 30 Lahore
49 Vallabhbhai Patel   31 October 1875 – 15 December 1950 1931 Karachi
50 Madan Mohan Malaviya   25 December 1861 – 1946 1932 Delhi
51 Nellie Sengupta   1886–1973 1933 Calcutta
52 Rajendra Prasad   3 December 1884 – 28 February 1963 1934 & 35 Bombay
53 Jawaharlal Nehru   14 November 1889 – 27 May 1964 1936 Lucknow
54 1937 Faizpur
55 Subhas Chandra Bose   23 January 1897 – 18 August 1945 1938 Haripura
56 Subhas Chandra Bose (resigned)
Rajendra Prasad replaced Bose after
the session.
    23 January 1897 – 18 August 1945 1939 Tripuri near Jabalpur
57 Abul Kalam Azad   1888 – 22 February 1958 1940–46 Ramgarh
58 J. B. Kripalani   1888 – 19 March 1982 1947 Meerut
59 Pattabhi Sitaraimayya   24 December 1880 – 17 December 1959 1948 & 49 Jaipur
60 Purushottam Das Tandon   1 August 1882 – 1 July 1961 1950 Nasik
61 Jawaharlal Nehru   14 November 1889 – 27 May 1964 1951 & 52 Delhi
62 1953 Hyderabad
63 1954 Calcutta
64 U. N. Dhebar 21 September 1905 – 1977 1955 Avadi
65 1956 Amritsar
66 1957 Indore
67 1958 Gauhati
68 1959 Nagpur
69 Indira Gandhi   19 November 1917 – 31 October 1984 1959 Delhi (Special Session)
70 Neelam Sanjiva Reddy   19 May 1913 – 1 June 1996 1960 Bangalore
71 1961 Bhavnagar
72 1962 & 63 Patna
73 K. Kamaraj   15 July 1903 – 2 October 1975 1964 Bhubaneswar
74 1965 Durgapur
75 1966 & 67 Jaipur
76 S. Nijalingappa   10 December 1902 – 9 August 2000 1968–1969 Hyderabad
Faridabad
77 Jagjivan Ram   5 April 1908 – 6 July 1986 1970 & 71 Bombay
78 Shankar Dayal Sharma   19 August 1918 – 26 December 1999 1972–74 Calcutta
79 Devakanta Barua   22 February 1914 – 1996 1975–77 Chandigarh
80 Kasu Brahmananda Reddy   28 July 1909 – 20 May 1994 1977–1978 South Delhi
81 Indira Gandhi   19 November 1917 – 31 October 1984 1978–83 Delhi
82 1983 & 84 Calcutta
83 Rajiv Gandhi   20 August 1944 – 21 May 1991 1985–91 Bombay
84 P. V. Narasimha Rao   28 June 1921 – 23 December 2004 1991–96 Tirupati
85 Sitaram Kesri   November 1919 – 24 October 2000 1996–98 Calcutta
86 Sonia Gandhi   9 December 1946 1998–2017 Calcutta
87 Rahul Gandhi   19 June 1970 2017–2019 Delhi
88 Sonia Gandhi   9 December 1946 2019– Delhi[17]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Indian National Congress". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 26 February 2018.
  2. ^ a b c d Marshall, P. J. (2001), The Cambridge Illustrated History of the British Empire, Cambridge University Press, p. 179, ISBN 978-0-521-00254-7
  3. ^ a b Chiriyankandath, James (2016), Parties and Political Change in South Asia, Routledge, p. 2, ISBN 978-1-317-58620-3
  4. ^ a b Kopstein, Jeffrey; Lichbach, Mark; Hanson, Stephen E. (2014), Comparative Politics: Interests, Identities, and Institutions in a Changing Global Order, Cambridge University Press, p. 344, ISBN 978-1-139-99138-4
  5. ^ "Indian National Congress – about INC, history, symbol, leaders and more". Elections.in. 7 February 2014. Retrieved 3 May 2014.
  6. ^ Sahasrabuddhe, Vinay (8 August 2016). "In Decline Mode, Congress Struggles With a 'Crisis of Purpose'". The Quint. Retrieved 17 December 2017.
  7. ^ "Indian National Congress". Times of India. 9 February 2017. Retrieved 27 July 2018.
  8. ^ "The Congress Constitution". Indian National Congress. Retrieved 29 May 2019.
  9. ^ "Indian National Congress: From 1885 till 2017, a brief history of past presidents". 5 December 2017.
  10. ^ a b "Sonia Gandhi (Indian politician)". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 3 October 2014.
  11. ^ a b Barbara A. Somervill (2007). Indira Gandhi: Political Leader in India. Capstone. pp. 91–. ISBN 978-0-7565-1885-1.
  12. ^ DelhiDecember 16, Prabhash K. Dutta New; December 16, 2017UPDATED:; Ist, 2017 13:38. "Rahul Gandhi is not youngest Congress president, not even in family". India Today.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link)
  13. ^ "Goodbye, Rahul Gandhi?". India Today.
  14. ^ April 21, Nikhil Chakravartty; January 31, 2015 ISSUE DATE:; April 28, 1978UPDATED:; Ist, 2015 10:37. "Indira Gandhi installed as president of break-away faction of Congress Party". India Today.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link)
  15. ^ DelhiNovember 19, Prabhash K. Dutta New; November 19, 2018UPDATED:; Ist, 2018 11:57. "Here's how Sonia Gandhi replaced Sitaram Kesri as Congress president". India Today.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link)
  16. ^ Parkin, Benjamin (2019). "India's Congress party names Sonia Gandhi interim president". Financial Times (11 August 2019). Financial times. Retrieved 13 August 2019.
  17. ^ Phukan, Sandeep (10 August 2019). "Congress brings back Sonia Gandhi to lead for now". The Hindu.

External linksEdit


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