Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Sunday promised to break the “walls” in the party between workers and leaders and promised to give more tickets to the youth in the forthcoming elections to defeat the BJP.
Also sending out a strong message against factionalism in his concluding address at the party’s 84th plenary, he said there will be emphasis on discipline as the party prepares for four major assembly polls this year and the Lok Sabha polls in 2019.
Gandhi, who had sought to make the plenary worker-centric, pointed to the empty stage, saying he had kept it like that to make place for talented youth from the party and outside.
Unlike the previous plenaries and AICC gatherings, senior leaders were not seated on the stage. There were also group discussions for greater involvement of workers.
Gandhi referred to shortcomings of the Congress saying that workers who were at the back of the packed hall had the energy but there was a wall between them and party leaders.
“My first task will be to break that wall. We will do it with love and respect to seniors,” he said.
Referring to organisational problems of candidates “parachuting” with tickets through connections and workers being denied ticket, Gandhi said the party under him made a small demonstration of its intent by giving tickets to youth in Gujarat elections, stressing that another “wall” that needs to be broken was between India’s political system and the youth.
Gandhi also asked party workers to not indulge in factionalism and work at cross-purposes during elections. “If you have to fight, do it after the elections. There will be tight discipline for six-seven months,” he said.