Udaipur, May 13
The Congress is all set to adopt the one family, one ticket rule with an exception to be allowed only if a second ticket aspirant from one family performs spectacularly well for the party.
The rule is likely to be adopted at the end of the Chintan Shivir which kicked off on Friday with the opening remarks by Congress President Sonia Gandhi.
The one family one ticket rule and the exception formula will apply across ranks including the Congress’s ruling Gandhi family.
Speaking ahead of the commencement of the Shivir, AICC general secretary in-charge of Rajasthan and member of the organisational matters for the conclave Ajay Maken said unanimity had nearly emerged on formalising the one party one ticket rule.
“There is almost a consensus on the one family one ticket formula. An exception will be made only if the second ticket seeker from one family has worked exceptionally for the party for five years. It should not be that a senior leader wants someone from his family to contest and that person bags the ticket without putting in any work for the party. The idea is party leaders don’t give tickets to their kids and relatives without those aspirants working for the party,” said Maken.
As the Shivir, the Congress mooted landmark reforms to strengthen the organisation including – a new organisational unit called ‘mandal’ to come up between a booth and a block; an in-house public insight department to read the mood of the people and espouse issues close to them; an internal assessment wing to promote performers and check inertia; a fixed five-year tenure for office bearers followed by a three-year cooling off period should anyone seek reappointment to the same post.
Maken said once the suggestions of the organisation panel are adopted, a transformative change across all levels of party organisation would be visible.
Admitting that the party organisation has remained stagnant for nearly 60 years, Maken said “we have not undertaken any transformative changes. Consensus is now emerging on building a new organisational unit called the ‘mandal’ between the polling booth and the blocks. The smallest organisational unit of the Congress currently is the polling booth and then suddenly the block emerges. Unanimity is emerging to have three to five ‘mandals samitis’ after each block and 15 to 20 booths after each mandal.”
Maken also said that unlike the present practice of commissioning surveys to read people’s sentiments on election eve, the Congress was now mulling an in-house public insight department to conduct routine surveys related to people’s issues and assess issues closest to their hearts.
“The time is changing, but we have not been able to change as fast as the times. The public insight department will be an in-house department which will be active not just in elections but also work all year around to provide a technology-based feedback mechanism on which issues matter most to the people and which issues should the Congress take up as a strong opposition,” the senior leader said.
He also said consensus was building on developing an internal assessment wing to set parameters to promote talent. “Assessment of office bearers is being mooted to promote good workers and to remove others from active posts. There is near consensus on this,” said Maken, adding ways for active enforcement of discipline will be discussed at the Shivir.
To further strengthen the organization, the Congress was planning to ensure half the organisation across all levels consisted of people under 50 years of age.
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