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Lyngdoh to oversee Youth Congress polls

In its bid to revitalise the Congress at the grassroots level and remove bias in the appointment of office-bearers of the Youth Congress...

Written by Express News Service | Ahmedabad |
January 29, 2009 1:03:25 am

In its bid to revitalise the Congress at the grassroots level and remove bias in the appointment of office-bearers of the Youth Congress,the party has decided to hold elections at state and constituency levels. Until now,the appointments were made through nominations.

The party has appointed a committee under the chairmanship of former Chief Election Commissioner James Michael Lyngdoh to guide its youth wing for electing the best and most popular workers.

Lyngdogh’s last stint with Gujarat was in the capacity of chief election commissioner when he oversaw the 2002 Assembly polls held in the wake of the post-Godhra riots. During his Vadodara visit to oversee election preparations in 2002,he had publicly reprimanded the then district collector Bhagyesh Jha for reportedly misleading him about the ground situation. Jha is now the state director of information.

On a pilot basis,the first election for youth wing office bearers was held in Punjab recently and the party had found it to be highly successful. It will now be repeated in Gujarat and all other states will be covered in the next few months.

The strategy,which is intended to infuse transparency and strengthen democratic values in this oldest political outfit,is,however,viewed by some seniors as a bid to strengthen the grip of Rahul Gandhi over the party. As the exercise is being publicised as part of Rahul’s programme to give importance to young blood,it would also ensure smooth transition of the young Gandhi to the party’s topmost post whenever it is decided.

All India Youth Congress president Ashok Tanwar told mediapersons at the state party headquarters on Wednesday,that the youth wing in Gujarat would hold an enrolment drive from February 8 to 28.

During the drive,about five lakh people aged between 18 and 35 will be enrolled as members of the Youth Congress by filling up a form and paying Rs 15 as fee. After enrolment,elections for office bearers,for the

Lok Sabha seat,Assembly seat and state-level unit will be held in the first fortnight of March. All Youth Congress members would also be issued permanent identity cards.

He said the party would not recruit people with criminal history and prevent bogus registrations.

Jitendra Singh,All India Congress Committee secretary and in-charge Youth Congress,said there will be reservations for SC,ST and women candidates in the elections. A voters’ list with photo I-cards would also be released before the elections. Gujarat Youth Congress president Mihir Shah and Vijyander Shingla have been assigned the job for enrolment. Shingla would also be the election observer.

Rahul Gandhi to visit city tomorrow
AICC general secretary Rahul Gandhi will visit the city on Friday to address party workers at the closing ceremony of ‘Abhay Udaan -Bharat Mahaan’ programme. He is scheduled to administer the oath of patriotism to the party workers.

State Congress president Siddharth Patel said Rahul would also felicitate nine youths from Gujarat for their contribution in different programmes during the event.

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