Congress Chintan Shivir | National

Ready with action plan, Cong. accuses BJP of trying to ‘break’ India

Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra. File

Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra. File | Photo Credit: Sandeep Saxena

The Congress is gearing up to take on the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) with a completely reworked election management architecture, even as it accused the BJP of trying to “break” India with its divisive politics for the sake of votes.

On Tuesday, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, K.C. Venugopal, Randeep Surjewala, Ajay Maken and Tariq Anwar were among the party’s top leaders who met at the All India Congress Committee (AICC) headquarters to discuss an action plan that will give shape to the host of structural changes announced at the ‘ Nav Sankalp Chintan Shivir‘ in Udaipur.

These leaders will meet again on Wednesday to chart out the course of organisational reforms. Among them is the creation of a separate election management department.

Under the new architecture, the party will deploy 6,500 election representatives across all the Lok Sabha and Assembly seats for a detailed profiling of the constituencies, identify issues that resonate with the people, festivals that they celebrate, popular influencers, and so on.

The election management wing will work closely with the proposed public insight department that will gather public feedback on crucial political issues, and an integrated communication wing that would combine the social media wing and research departments with the traditional media department.

A source cited how such a system would have helped the party during the recent Punjab Assembly elections. 

“During the 2017 elections, Captain Amarinder Singh and his poll strategist Prashant Kishor had promised jobs or unemployment allowance. Employment was the biggest issue for the voters, but after Charanjit Singh Channi took over as Chief Minister, we nearly spent ₹15,000 crore in subsidising electricity. If we had spent the same amount on unemployment allowance, things may have been different,” the source said.

The three-day brainstorming session at Udaipur also saw intense debate over a wide range of issues, including the issue of the Gandhis’ accessibility and the need for them to connect with people.

Another issue that dominated the discussions, especially in the political committee, was that of the growing communal divide and the party’s position towards Hindutva.

Former party chief Rahul Gandhi tweeted: “People’s issues -- earnings, inflation; BJP’s issues -- riots, dictatorship. If the country has to progress, negative thinking of BJP and politics of hatred has to be defeated. Let’s together do ‘Bharat jodo’ (unite India).”

“When you break the unity of people, the threat of India breaking becomes more real. We urge the BJP to have a relook at the way they are governing the country and dividing people,” Mr. Maken told reporters at a press conference, adding, “Kindly don’t divide people as it takes generations to unite people.”

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Printable version | Jun 20, 2022 5:24:22 pm |