Special Correspondent

Party activists will go door to door to enrol new members, says the party leader

VIJAYAWADA: Congress activists will go door to door to enroll two lakh members in all the 59 municipal divisions of the city in a drive launched on Friday.

Lagadapati Rajagopal, MP, launching the membership drive at Andhra Ratna Bhavan, the city Congress office, urged the party activists to ‘knock on the door of every citizen’s heart’ and invite them to join the party in the drive that would go on into the first week of September. Mr. Rajagopal said he would personally go around all the 28 municipal divisions not represented by Congress corporators to enrol members into the party. An army of photographers would be deployed to click the pictures of all the persons enrolled into the party right at their homes, so that there would be no need for the new members to go to a studio to get photographed like in the past. Appealing to the party activists to take enrolment of members as a prestige issue, he told them to go about it in a scientific manner.

There were 2.4 lakh households in the city and 4,000 households in every municipal division. While 10 days were required to cover all the households, the activists had 30 to 40 days to go door to door and enrol members, the MP said, explaining in simple mathematics.

Mobile teams

He asked party activists to establish offices to operate from. If a house or a room was not available, they should at least pitch a tent at a centre, so that people could easily know where to go if they wanted to enrol as members of the party. Three mobile enrolment vans would be utilised to cover areas that were really out of the way. He said five centres would be set up to process the applications and the data generated on a daily basis. Special software was being developed to process the information.

The MP wanted woman, youth and student wings of the party to enrol new members into their organisations, as that would add to the membership of the party. “The Congress party should have access to sections that are not within the reach of even the media,” he said.

Other leaders who spoke on the occasion said the developmental and welfare programmes of the Congress government in the State and at the Centre should also be taken to people during this drive to enroll members.

City president Pyla Sominaidu felicitated Mr. Rajagopal for ‘his active role in stirring the UPA government to victory in the recent confidence motion’. Former minister M.K. Baig, former MLA Adusumilli Jayaprakash and former city Congress president Narindi Kanaka Rao, who all returned into the Congress fold recently, were felicitated by Mr. Sominaidu at the meeting.