|Rediff India Abroad Home | All the sections|
UP : Cong' revival plan starts with survey
Nistula Hebbar in New Delhi | April 12, 2006 18:20 IST
For all those wondering when the Congress will start serious moves to revive itself in Uttar Pradesh, the answer may lie in an in-house survey by the party, coordinated by Amethi MP Rahul Gandhi.
The survey tried to gauge the mood of the electorate for the Assembly polls in 2007 and came up with concrete suggestions for the party's revival in the politically most important state.
The good news, according to the document, is that despite a distant fourth position in the last elections, there is a widespread belief that the party can stage a comeback. The bad news is that the party is not cadre-based and its state leaders are out of touch with the people.
The report says by 2007, over 75 per cent of the electorate will be in the 14-45 age group. "This young populace will need a leader like Rahul Gandhi who is well regarded and has a positive programme of action," said a Gandhi family aide.
The report pointed out that in 49 Assembly seats, the total votes polled by the Congress and independent candidates last time were more than those polled by the winning candidate.
The report suggests tying up with such independent candidates in each Assembly seat and identifying and listening to opinion makers in each district.
Several districts have important sub-castes and Congressmen will be asked to co-opt them, the report says, adding that offices, known as aam admi sahyog kendras, will be set up in each district to tell people what the National Advisory Council is doing for development.
In a suggestion that has in all likelihood come from Rahul Gandhi, the report says that the Congress should tie up with influential NGOs working in the state and participate in social work to identify with development-related activities.
Party sources say Rahul Gandhi will be launched in UP only after favourable conditions are established. This survey is expected to give a direction to laying the foundation for those conditions. "We have to revive ourselves in Uttar Pradesh. It's a battle for political survival," said a senior Congress leader.