Former Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda's 'Parivartan Maha Rally' at his home turf Rohtak on Sunday is being projected by his supporters as a show of strength ahead of assembly polls and will be watched closely for the signals it sends about his plans.
The rally, where no senior party leader has been invited, has led to speculation that Hooda could be thinking of charting an independent political course.
An aide of Hooda, who did not want to be named, said that the "grand rally" will sound poll bugle for the assembly polls to oust the BJP government.
He signalled unease over the delay in decisions by the Congress relating to orgsational changes and announcing committees for poll preparations but said there was no plan of Hooda leaving the party.
"The poll preparations should have started long back. So much time has been lost. Every person is worried. A line of action should be drawn. We cannot give a walk over to the BJP," he said.
A senior state Congress leader, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said that Hooda may be facing pressure from some of his supporters but he will not leave the party.
Sonia Gandhi's taking over as interim party chief has also apparently eased matters as Hooda became chief minister for the first time when she was the party chief. He had been picked over his rival Bhajan Lal.
Hooda had attended the Independence Day event at the Congress headquarters on August 15.
For long, Hooda has been seeking a change in the state leadership but his demand has not been accepted by the Congress top brass.
The rally is being seen as a signal by Hooda that he should be projected as the chief ministerial candidate and appointed as state unit chief. He is also keen to have a major say in the distribution of tickets. Hooda's son Deepender Hooda is also seen as a contender for the post of PCC chief.
Both the leaders lost the Lok Sabha election earlier this year, which led to some fall in their political stock. The Haryana unit of Congress has seen intense factionalism with differences between Hooda and some senior state leaders including state Congress chief Dr Ashok Tanwar.
There was also a suggestion by Dr Tanwar that those who had lost Lok Sabha polls should not contest assembly polls.
Asked about Hooda's rally, Dr Tanwar said: "The Congress is one, will remain one and will win the assembly polls."
Congress leaders are hopeful that if there is unity, the party will be able to throw up a strong challenge in the assembly polls as the issues will be local.
BJP, which is riding high after its unprecedented success in the Lok Sabha polls, has already started its preparations for the assembly polls.
Party chief Amit Shah announced 'Mission 75' at a rally in Jind on Saturday and accused the Congress of not repealing Article 370 over the past 70 years.
He said Modi government's decision to repeal Article 370, which gave special powers to Jammu and Kashmir, was a "milestone".
( With inputs from ANI )