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Cong may draft dist, local-level manifestos for Panchayat polls

By Pranjal Bhuyan

GUWAHATI, Nov 4 - The Opposition Congress is looking at the option of drafting district and local-level manifestos for the forthcoming Panchayat polls, even as the party has made it clear that it will contest the elections on its own.

Sources in the Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) told The Assam Tribune that the party is thinking on the lines of publishing manifestos at the district, mandal and Panchayat level so that the voters can identify themselves with the issues highlighted by the party.

�We had recently announced constitution of our Manifesto Committee for the Panchayat polls. That committee, headed by our Assam unit president Ripun Bora, will draft the State-level manifesto for the elections. But now we are also thinking on the lines of publishing manifestos at the district and Panchayat level as well,� a senior APCC office-bearer told this newspaper.

He added, �we want to highlight local issues of relevance in those documents and suggest ways of tackling them. After all, the Panchayat polls are a very local affair and each Panchayat or Block in Assam has its own unique problems and issues. So we want to go ahead on the matter is such a way that voters are able to identify their own problems and ways to tackle those through our manifestos.�

Congress party sources said that the top leadership of APCC will deliberate on the viability of having district, mandal and Panchayat-level manifestos and make a final decision soon in this regard.

�We will also be giving a final shape to our Campaign Committee within the next few days. Bora is arriving in Guwahati tomorrow, and once he is here, the matter will be taken up for deliberation,� said a leader.

Meanwhile, the grand old party has decided not to go for tie-up with any other outfit during the Panchayat polls.

�We will fight the Panchayat elections on our own. There is no question of having even local-level alliances or seat adjustment with any other party. We have full confidence on our own ability to emerge victorious in the polls,� said the leader.

The Congress party has already started accepting applications from its members who want to contest the Panchayat elections.

The party has also stepped up its ongoing �Jan Sampark Abhiyan� across the State.

�It will cover all 26,000 booths across Assam. The first phase of the campaign will be completed by November 18. So far, the Jan Sampark campaign has covered 100 per cent of the booths in some districts like Dhemaji, Jorhat, Sivasagar, Golaghat and Biswanath. Our party workers are going house-to-house to meet the voters. We are also seeking feedback from the public regarding the issues of local importance,� added the APCC leader.

Party sources said the public interface campaign is meant to consolidate Congress� base not only for the Panchayat elections, but also for next year�s Lok Sabha polls.

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Cong may draft dist, local-level manifestos for Panchayat polls

GUWAHATI, Nov 4 - The Opposition Congress is looking at the option of drafting district and local-level manifestos for the forthcoming Panchayat polls, even as the party has made it clear that it will contest the elections on its own.

Sources in the Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) told The Assam Tribune that the party is thinking on the lines of publishing manifestos at the district, mandal and Panchayat level so that the voters can identify themselves with the issues highlighted by the party.

�We had recently announced constitution of our Manifesto Committee for the Panchayat polls. That committee, headed by our Assam unit president Ripun Bora, will draft the State-level manifesto for the elections. But now we are also thinking on the lines of publishing manifestos at the district and Panchayat level as well,� a senior APCC office-bearer told this newspaper.

He added, �we want to highlight local issues of relevance in those documents and suggest ways of tackling them. After all, the Panchayat polls are a very local affair and each Panchayat or Block in Assam has its own unique problems and issues. So we want to go ahead on the matter is such a way that voters are able to identify their own problems and ways to tackle those through our manifestos.�

Congress party sources said that the top leadership of APCC will deliberate on the viability of having district, mandal and Panchayat-level manifestos and make a final decision soon in this regard.

�We will also be giving a final shape to our Campaign Committee within the next few days. Bora is arriving in Guwahati tomorrow, and once he is here, the matter will be taken up for deliberation,� said a leader.

Meanwhile, the grand old party has decided not to go for tie-up with any other outfit during the Panchayat polls.

�We will fight the Panchayat elections on our own. There is no question of having even local-level alliances or seat adjustment with any other party. We have full confidence on our own ability to emerge victorious in the polls,� said the leader.

The Congress party has already started accepting applications from its members who want to contest the Panchayat elections.

The party has also stepped up its ongoing �Jan Sampark Abhiyan� across the State.

�It will cover all 26,000 booths across Assam. The first phase of the campaign will be completed by November 18. So far, the Jan Sampark campaign has covered 100 per cent of the booths in some districts like Dhemaji, Jorhat, Sivasagar, Golaghat and Biswanath. Our party workers are going house-to-house to meet the voters. We are also seeking feedback from the public regarding the issues of local importance,� added the APCC leader.

Party sources said the public interface campaign is meant to consolidate Congress� base not only for the Panchayat elections, but also for next year�s Lok Sabha polls.

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