India’s Sonia Gandhi to Undergo Surgery Abroad

Posted August 4th, 2011 at 6:30 am (UTC-5)
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India's ruling Congress Party says its leader, Sonia Gandhi, has traveled abroad to undergo surgery for an undisclosed medical condition.

A party official told reporters Thursday that Gandhi could be away for two to three weeks. The official did not say what the operation was for, but local news reports said it could be taking place in the United States.

The party official initially caused confusion in the reporting of Gandhi's condition, telling reporters that she had already undergone surgery, before later correcting himself.

He said a four-member group has been appointed to run the party in her absence. The group includes her son Rahul, who is widely seen as a future prime minister.

Born in Italy, the 64-year-old Gandhi is considered India's most powerful politician. She is the widow of assassinated former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi.