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Congress to have transparent organisational elections: Mullappally Ramachandran

Congress to have transparent organisational elections: Mullappally Ramachandran

New Delhi: Congress will have a "100 per cent transparent" organisational elections this time to bring in "fresh leadership" at all levels in the backdrop of its debacle in the Lok Sabha polls, a prominent party leader said Wednesday.

Former Union Minister Mullappally Ramachandran, who is the Chairman of the Central Election Authority of the party, told PTI that the party polls scheduled in the new year will be an opportunity to revive the organisation.

"All loyal Congressmen are welcome", he remarked when asked whether those who have left the party or parted ways with it due to various reasons would be brought back.

The membership drive of the party is currently underway and would conclude on December 31 and the new year will see start of the process of organisational polls.

The election of Congress President is planned to be scheduled between July 5 and July 25 by which time the organisational polls at the lower level will be complete.

Sonia Gandhi has been at the helm of the party since March 1998 and holds the distinction of having the longest tenure as the head of the party which was founded way back in 1885. Rahul Gandhi was made the Congress Vice President in January 2013 at the Jaipur Chintan Shivir of the party.

Ramachandran, who has had meetings with both Sonia and Rahul recently, said he would ensure that the organisational polls are held smoothly and that the exercise is "free and fair and 100 per cent transparent."

He said that in order to have foolproof elections, he plans to have Pradesh Returning Officers of "proven integrity, loyalty and commitment."

Organisational elections in the past have often been dogged by charges of bogus membership by rival factions to have control over the party.

Ramachandran wanted younger generation to enrol in the party in large numbers as "Congress is the largest democratic and secular organisation in the world and is set to play a crucial role in the days to come and we want fresh leadership at all levels".

These are the first organisational elections after the Congress amended its constitution to have the party polls after five years instead of three years earlier.

"Once a crisis is there, all Congressmen get together as has been seen in Kerala", remarked Ramachandran when asked about the prospects of the party at a time when it has secured just 44 seats in the Lok Sabha polls, the lowest in its history.

Ramachandran, who has convened a meeting of party General Secretaries on Oct 20, wanted partymen to play a pro-active role to ensure a transparent organisational election.

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