Mounting public criticism and growing opposition within appeared to have forced Congress to do a re-think on the controversial ordinance on convicted lawmakers with Rahul Gandhi slamming it as "complete nonsense" and that it should be "torn up and thrown away".
"Why should we be getting the muck over this ordinance just to save one Congress MP or some ally leader. This was an indefensible ordinance," was the view of a senior party leader on the issue.
Gandhi's move came amid some party leaders expressing apprehension that the move will damage Congress' prospects in upcoming elections.
The party claims that after Gandhi rejected the ordinance, much of the the damage on the party will be undone and BJP cannot derive any political mileage out of it "since it had backed the exact formulation of the ordiance in an all-party meeting".
There is also a belief in the party that Gandhi's intervention at this stage will also help blunt the criticism that he does not interfere when the party is struggling with key issues.
As the opposition mounted a fresh attack on Congress after Gandhi's remarks slamming the ordinance, Congress has asked its most articulate lot of spokespersons to counter it.
A senior party leader, speaking on condition of anonymity, also rejected the suggestion that Gandhi's sharp attack on the ordinance gives the impression that the country has a "lameduck" Prime Minister.
"Withdrawing an ordinance does not make the Prime Minister lameduck," said the leader who felt that another cabinet meeting could be held to take another decision on the issue.
The leader also said Gandhi must have talked to other leaders also on the issue.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who is in Washington, said the issues raised by Rahul Gandhi will be considered by the Cabinet on his return to India.