A few months ago, Rahul Gandhi surprised his party colleagues by suggesting elections to the Congress Working Committee (CWC). But entrenched interests and party chief Sonia Gandhi’s desire to make the CWC inclusive to balance regional, religious and caste demands stymied the proposal.
Rahul is rewriting the political lexicon of the Congress in his own way. In a revolutionary decision, he engaged the Foundation for Advanced Management of Elections (FAME), led by former election commissioners J. M. Lyngdoh and K. J. Rao, to conduct the polls in the youth and student wings. “Rahul has ensured criminals do not enter politics,” says Rao.
After verifying antecedents, we decide whether a particular person can contest the IYC/ NSUI election or not. Not a single person who has been chargesheeted or faces criminal cases has got elected to the IYC/ NSUI decisionmaking bodies.” He said the election process in these two organisations, which began two years ago, would be completed by December 31.
LASTJuly, Rahul’s determination was put to test by vested interests in the party. In consultation with FAME, the IYC’s Goa unit had disqualified PWD minister Churchill Alemao’s daughter Valanka from contesting the president’s post because she had adopted unfair means.