GUWAHATI, June 13 - As part of the organisational restructuring exercise of the Congress party, the election process for a new State committee of the grand old party’s youth wing will take place by the end of this month.
Altogether ten candidates are in the fray for the post of State Youth Congress president.
It is noteworthy that the Congress party is currently undergoing a revamp nationally as part of Rahul Gandhi’s plans to give it a new look with an eye on the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. The exercise is also being undertaken in the party's various wings and affiliated organisations, including the Youth Congress, the Mahila Congress and the NSUI.
The Youth Congress recently undertook a membership drive in Assam where over 5 lakh members were enrolled.
Senior Congress party leaders told The Assam Tribune that the membership drive carried out by the Youth Congress received good response in minority-dominated districts as well as in areas dominated by the Assamese community.
“We were able to enrol over 5 lakh members even though the drive was undertaken for a mere 25 days. The new entrants were mostly from Nagaon, Dhubri and Barpeta, all minority-dominated districts. This shows that minorities are very much with us, despite all assertions to the contrary by the AIUDF. Even in a district like Nalbari, we have been able to enrol over 3,400 ‘active’ members, while primary members are five times that number,” said a Youth Congress leader.
Some party leaders, however, admitted that the response from the youths belonging to the tea communities has not been as good as in previous years.
“BJP has made some inroads into the tea communities. However, we could have been able to enrol more youths from the tea communities if the membership drive period had been longer instead of the mere 25 days that was allotted to us,” he said.
Those who have filed nominations for the post of State Youth Congress president are Anghita Dutta, Arup Talukdar, Jitu Gogoi, Kamrul Islam Chaudhary, Mohim Chandra Payeng, Mrinal Hazarika, Nur Sofiqul Wazid, Pranab Kalita, Ronuj Pegu and Ratul Patowary.
Altogether, around 85,000 Youth Congress ‘active members’ having voting rights will be eligible to exercise their franchise in the organisational polls.
Some Youth Congress members have expressed unhappiness over the ongoing organisational elections process and alleged that there have been attempts to manipulate it.
“Altogether 17 candidates have filed nominations for the post of State president. Only six were initially allowed to contest by a panel set up in New Delhi. After protests, four others were finally admitted in the list. So, proximity to senior party leaders seems to have played some role in the exercise,” said a Youth Congress leader on condition of anonymity.
While the contestant securing the maximum number of votes will be the next State Youth Congress president, the four candidates securing the next highest number of votes in descending order will be appointed as vice presidents.
There will be separate elections for the posts of general secretaries, as well as for the posts of office bearers in the district and constituency levels.