After the Chintan Shivir and the All India Congress Committee meeting is over in Jaipur on January 20, it is expected that there would be a reshuffle of the AICC, state Pradesh Congress Committees. Some chief ministerial heads may also roll as the party prepares for the assembly elections later this year and the general elections in 2014. Renu Mittal reports.
Sources say that a number of leaders; both outgoing and incoming would be under the scanner during the Chintan Shivir, particularly by Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi who is taking more and more of a pro-active role in the running of the organisation.
One of the suggestions is to reduce the number of secretaries in the AICC and to go back to the earlier system where there were joint secretaries under the secretaries.
The Congress now may like to induct members of the youth brigade as joint secretaries and many of those who have been short-listed would be under the scanner at the shivir as their performance would be keenly observed by Rahul and his team.
Along with this, there are serious complaints against a number of general secretaries and state in-charges, and sources say they are in line to be axed from the AICC.
The lateral entry into the Congress from the Janata Dal, Mohan Prakash, who is in-charge of crucial states such as Maharashtra, Jammu and Kashmir and Gujarat and was heading the screening committee for the distribution of tickets in Uttar Pradesh has proved to be an underachiever, to put it rather mildly.
The UP wallahs complained that a man from the Janata Dal who does not know Congressmen has been put in-charge of selecting candidates while Gujarat was a big disappointment for the Congress as the party failed to nail Modi and could not rise to its full potential. He will be under watch, now.
Another general secretary against whom a large number of complaints have been given to the Congress president is Chaudhary Birender Singh who is in-charge of Delhi, Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh. While the Congress won Uttarakhand by a whisker (one seat), all state leaders have complained to the Congress president about his role in the elections.
During the Delhi corporation elections he insisted on 18 tickets being changed which was done, but the result was that the party lost all those seats along with all the 3 mayor seats. Both the chief minister and the PCC president were angry and upset and had complained against him.
In Himachal Pradesh, the party won thanks to Vir Bhadra Singh, but Birender Singh consistently opposed the senior Thakur leader at every turn, backing his rivals. The AICC state in-charge of Punjab and Bihar -- Gurcharan Singh Charak is under the scanner for his acts of omission and commission and it is expected that he would be shown the door -- a process which has been delayed within the AICC.
Another one in trouble is Jagmeet Singh Brar who is in-charge of Goa where the Congress lost elections. A number of complaints have been received against him and there is a likely change here also.
Sources say that unlike in the past, Rahul is likely to have a much bigger say in both appointments and disappointments as he is said to be in favour of a decisive overhauling of the AICC.
There have been attempts by senior AICC general secretaries to underplay his wish, but unlike in the past when he would not make an issue of it, this time around he is asserting himself and wants his decisions to be implemented.