Without a lot media glare, the grand outdated Congress social gathering is present process a large transformation in India’s most politically essential state- Uttar Pradesh. The overhaul which began in the social gathering after the debacle in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections is now seen taking roots inside the state as the social gathering approaches the subsequent meeting election. However, the agent behind the silent evolving course of is none apart from social gathering’s General Secretary in cost Priyanka Gandhi.
Priyanka Gandhi is referred to as “didi” by the Congress staff. She additionally resembles the look and magnificence of two former Prime Ministers. When it comes to her seems to be, she has been typically seen for carrying the resemblance of her grandmother- former PM Indira Gandhi and when it comes to the fashion of political and organisational functioning, she is pushed by her late father Rajiv Gandhi. With her fashion of functioning, she has opened the doorways for the “Aam Congressi” from Uttar Pradesh, like her father.
Following the defeat of social gathering in the 2019 Lok Sabha election and the poor efficiency in state, Priyanka had already met round 5 thousand social gathering leaders and staff from throughout the state. Apart from assembly candidates and senior leaders, she had met not less than ten members from every of the district committee. It was first step to assess the onground actuality of the organisation and the disaster inside the social gathering.
Priyanka is working tirelessly to lay a robust basis that may as soon as once more catapult her social gathering to the political heart stage of UP politics as the state goes for meeting polls in 2022.
PUTTING THE HOUSE IN ORDER
The State Congress committee (PCC) used to be a mammoth physique, extending past 500 members, with 120 General Secretaries, 100 Vice presidents and 175 secretaries. The districts and metropolis Committees additionally used to be big our bodies with out precise grounded ‘Netas’ or ‘Karyakartas’.
Organisational pruning and fixing accountability grew to become the first key agenda for Priyanka Gandhi. A senior social gathering functionary working carefully with Priyanka Gandhi recollects how throughout the months following the basic election final 12 months, the organisational hollowness was uncovered on the floor. Even as Priyanka tried to set the ball on hearth, main from the entrance in circumstances together with homicide of Dalit tribals in Sonbhadra, the social gathering leaders failed to capitalise on the momentum.
Priyanka’s first step was to overhaul and enthuse new vigour in the district and metropolis committees. She went forward searching for names of these prepared to head social gathering committees. From every district, 10 aspirants have been chosen for a gathering with Priyanka. She narrowed down to three most succesful candidates. The three names thus shortlisted have been additional deliberated upon with a core crew comprising of state president Ajay Kumar Lallu, amongst others to make the remaining decide. Till November final 12 months, the social gathering had appointed 55 new DCC presidents by this train and on the means typically bringing in new and younger faces to the entrance line.
The floor work step by step prolonged upward in the direction of the state physique, the Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC). When the new state committee was introduced, it was an overhaul of outdated faces with new faces. Old leaders have been stripped of the titles. The new state committee contains of simply 61 members which earlier was greater than 500. With 5 Vice presidents and ten General Secretaries, it’s a brand new PCC which has completely shunned the outdated guard.
Anil Yadav, social gathering’s newly appointed state organisation secretary is one of the examples to replicate the change. In his thirties, Yadav is a former scholar chief at Allahabad University who joined the social gathering in 2017. Newly entrusted with the accountability to increase the organisation, Yadav says “The vision of our leader is clear. We need a robust, responsive organisation which has a deep mass connect. In coming few months we are committed to reach all the 60 thousand plus village panchayats and have booth level committees”.
“The party is already in process of reaching out to grassroots. After many years the party now has organisational committees in all 800 plus blocks of the state”, Anil provides. The leaders now enthused with accountability are way more accountable and they’re repeatedly monitored by a parallel system dealt with by trusted members of Priyanka’s crew.
The influence of the transformation and fixing accountability could possibly be judged from the proven fact that social gathering over previous few months have grow to be the most seen face of the opposition on the streets. While state president Ajay Lallu had been taken in police custody round 30 occasions, a number of different leaders have additionally been arrested and jailed. From challenge of migrant labourers to legislation and order or unemployment, social gathering had been in a position to construct a number of profitable protests and campaigns.
BEYOND ORGANISATION- THE MASS CONNECT
The technique of Priyanka Gandhi and her crew could possibly be apprehended from her “Mass connect” program. The social gathering making its means inroads could possibly be assessed from the proven fact that for the first time in historical past, the social gathering has construct a base of greater than 70 lakh cell numbers and continues to add extra to its knowledge. The intention is to add not less than 70 p.c of round 13 crore cell customers in the state.
Mohit Pandey the former president of JNU college students union and now the head of UP Congress’s social media wing says, “We work on twin model of interior and external communication. While the interior model focuses on connect with party leaders and workers, the exterior model focuses on communicating with the masses. So from video messages of Priyanka and Rahul Gandhi to their tweets and social media posts all is shared to people via more than 23 thousand WhatsApp groups and broadcast lists”
But the process of amassing knowledge and stream lining has not been a simple train. The contact with the widespread individuals had been made by relentless political train and time to time intervention on points associated to numerous sections of the society.
For instance, round 14 lakh cell numbers have been collected throughout the final 12 months’s Kisan Jan Jagran Abhiyan, 12 lakh of them got here when social gathering launched a state large signature marketing campaign in the again drop of Unnao rape case, demanding motion towards the then BJP MLA Kuldeep Singh singer.
The icing on the cake got here throughout the Coronavirus pandemic disaster. Priyanka Gandhi’s relentless private intervention on challenge of migrant labourers and guaranteeing that social gathering took to massive scale meals and humanitarian assist to individuals in misery noticed one other huge outreach of the social gathering, the place it have been in a position to add round 28 lakh extra new contacts to its record.
PRIYANKA’S PERSONAL CONNECT
Now as social gathering step by step appear to transfer forward, undoing the wrongs of the previous and searching for extra scientific and electoral pushed in its method, Priyanka Gandhi doesn’t look in a temper to sit again and loosen up. From her rented lodging in New Delhi, the place she shifted after vacating her Lodhi street bungalow two months in the past, she is engaged day by day in a collection of zoom conferences with completely different sections of the society. From unemployed youths to farmers to ladies and migrant labourers, each stakeholder have been half of these digital interactions.
In this month itself, she had 9 digital conferences with unemployed youths and college students making ready for various exams. She additionally has a collection of different conferences with social gathering officer bearers and leaders of the frontal organisations. Last Thursday, she held a protracted assembly with PCC workplace bearers.
The function of this outreach, each inner and exterior is clear. It is to establish the new prospects and domesticate new base. Experiences from the individuals’s join provides concepts to transfer forward in organisational conferences.
Pradeep Narwal, the younger Dalit chief handpicked by Priyanka to be the AICC convener of SC ST wing of the social gathering in UP says, “Under Priyanka ji’s guidance task ahead for us is crystal clear. We are focusing on all sections of society, listening to their grievances and developing a new leadership from among them. We intervene on their issues which in turn gives us a new strong hold. The new approach has helped us reach out to the Dalits who feel cheated by parties like the BSP.”
Dalits alone will not be solely the goal space for the Congress, it has additionally been working strongly on minority points. From elevating a robust voice towards circumstances of atrocities towards minorities, in the backdrop of anti-CAA agitation to taking on the case of Dr Kafeel Khan, Priyanka led the marketing campaign herself from the entrance. Former legislation minister and outstanding chief Salman Khurshid has been appointed as chairman of the Manifesto committee for the UP elections.
Same had additionally been the technique on the Brahman entrance with leaders like Jitin Prasad and Rajesh Mishra who tried to intervene on the perceived anti-Brahmin sentiment below the Yogi Aditynath authorities.
THE ROAD AHEAD
If issues go in accordance to the plan, Priyanka Gandhi shall be shifting her base to Lucknow after Diwali. A senior member of the crew says, it was to be completed earlier than nevertheless it bought delayed as a result of of the coronavirus. However, earlier than she goes to UP and takes the command for the electoral battle of 2022, her thought is to put the home in order.
Probably, the Gandhi scion understands effectively that “Elections can’t be won only on the personal charisma. You need to have a strong organisational base to capital on it”. For the second Priyanka has ensured that outdated social gathering takes the proper flip and stand on its legs. However, the query arises would it not have the ability to give the desired tempo and grow to be Achilles heels for mightier BJP, SP and BSP.