M A I N   N E W S

Punjab Cong asks high command to speed up ticket distribution
Ajay Banerjee/TNS

Poll strategy

  • Mis-governance, corruption to be major rallying points for cadres
  • Month-long Parivartan Yatra in state from Nov1
  • To focus on Dalits and Hindus in urban areas to tackle BSP and BJP

New Delhi, October 24
With Assembly elections in Punjab less than four months away and contestants facing freshly carved out constituencies after delimitation, the Punjab Congress today asked the party high command to speed up the distribution of party tickets.

The Congress also drew up a strategy to sharpen its attack on the ruling SAD-BJP combine in the state. The party believes that ‘mis-governance’ and ‘corruption’ in the state can be major rallying points for its cadres, said sources. Also the Congress will launch its own month-long Parivartan Yatra in the state from November 1.

Congress leaders from Punjab were today called by Sonia Gandhi for what was the first pre-election meeting for the state party unit. Among others who attended were Amarinder Singh, Mohinder Singh Kaypee, Ambika Soni, Ashwani Kumar, Jagmeet Brar, Rajinder Kaur Bhattal and Gulchain Singh Charak.

Polls in Punjab are scheduled in February 2012. It has emerged that Amarinder Singh and Bhattal were advised that they should present a united face at the Parivartan Yatra. The party high command has not nominated any leader for the yatra to indicate that matters are open. “It will be collective effort,” said a senior leader while adding that yatra will expose the SAD-BJP government.

A senior leader from the Doaba region told the high command that this was the first Assembly election after the delimitation of constituencies. An early distribution of party tickets would allow the nominees to settle in the new constituencies. In the last elections in 2007, the delay in ticket distribution had led to serious debate within the party and harmed the chances of the nominees who were left with almost no time to garner support. This time, it could be tougher as delimitation has changed the dynamics.

Another major issue that was raised was that the Congress should focus on Dalits and Hindus in the urban areas and that these seats could be crucial in regaining power. In the last elections, the BJP had routed the Congress in urban seats in areas like Jalandhar and Ludhiana. The focus should be promote educated persons among the Dalits to be the party nominees. This would be needed to tackle the threat from the BSP, especially in the reserved seats.





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