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Cong to hold ‘public hearings’ to write 2014 poll manifesto

First hearing in Rae Bareli on Nov 27,to be addressed by Rahul

Written by Maulshree Seth | Lucknow | November 21, 2013 6:33:50 am

In an attempt to involve the masses in the process of preparing the party manifesto for the 2014 Lok Sabha elections,the Congress would hold “public hearings” across the country in the form of seminars and symposiums.

These hearings are likely to be launched November 27 from Rae Bareli,the parliamentary constituency of Congress president Sonia Gandhi. Party vice-president Rahul Gandhi is expected to address the gathering.

There will be separate themes for these seminars or symposiums that would be organised one after another in different parts of the country. The theme for the first symposium in Rae Bareli is expected to be the “weaker sections” with Rahul expected to seek suggestions for inclusion of issues benefiting them in the manifesto.

“The party aims to gather views of the public about issues that should be part of Congress manifesto rather than discussing it among its own leaders. With the initiation of Rahul Gandhi,it has been decided that such public hearings called “Jan Sunvayi” would take place across the country with different themes,” a senior party leader told The Indian Express.

The first symposium was earlier planned either in Allahabad or Lucknow. However,having learnt lessons from the recent past,where rallies organised by the state unit failed to gather a decent crowd for Rahul Gandhi,it has been decided to hold this programme in Rae Bareli and give the responsibility to the AICC team.

“Since it is going to take place across the country and Uttar Pradesh has been selected as the first place,all eyes would be set on the success of the event.” said a party leader.

Mistry takes up MPs,cadres’ issues

LUCKNOW: AICC general secretary Madhusudan Mistry has decided to personally bridge the gap between party cadres and the MPs by holding separate meeting with each of the 22 Congress representatives in the Parliament.

During the one-on-one meet with the MPs in the first week of December,Mistry will look to sort out issues and problems faced by them in their respective constituencies. He has already started visiting each parliamentary constituency in the state to interact with probable candidates.

In the last two days,Mistry visited Mishrikh and Mohanlalganj — both reserved Lok Sabha constituencies during 2009 election and both lost despite candidates garnering over a lakh votes.

“He first addressed the probable candidates and office-bearers and then held separate meetings in a group of five-to-seven. These included ticket seekers. Focus is mainly on two things: ask what they think led to party’s defeat in the last election,and their calculations on why and how they feel a candidate would win this time,” said a senior party leader.

Mistry has also reviewed party’s preparations for the agitation on Food Security Scheme it is about to hold on Thursday. All MPs,MLAs and Union ministers from the state have been asked to participate. The leaders and others will first gather at Lakshman Mela ground,give their speech and then march towards Vidhan Sabha,it has been decided. Sources say the party is ready to confront the police if it manages to gather a decent enough crowd. ens

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