GUWAHATI, Aug 2 - With an objective to secure at least 11 out of the 14 parliamentary constituencies from the State in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, Opposition Congress is focusing on strengthening its outreach at the booth level in Assam as well as on making its middle-rung leadership more accountable.
Congress sources said that Assam is a major target for the party�s high command and it is looking to regain the momentum in the State, where it fared poorly during both the 2014 Lok Sabha and the 2016 Assembly elections.
�We will undertake a massive outreach programme across the length and breadth of Assam to expose and highlight the misdeeds of the BJP regimes in New Delhi and Dispur. Newly-appointed All India Congress Committee (AICC) general secretary in-charge for Assam Harish Rawat, during his visit to Guwahati last week, laid particular emphasis on reviving our booth committees as well as further energising the block and district committees of the party,� a senior leader of the Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) told The Assam Tribune.
He said directions have been issued to all party office-bearers, from AICC and APCC members down to those at the block level, to sit down for face-to-face interactions with local workers at least once every two months.
�Our national president Rahul Gandhi, as well as senior leaders like former Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi and Rawat, believe that due importance will have to be given to the booth-level workers to revive our organisation and to achieve a turnaround in the 2019 polls,� said the leader.
It is noteworthy that Rawat, who spent three days in the city last week and held detailed deliberations with the State Congress leadership, had announced that the grand old party is targeting to capture at least 11 out of the 14 Lok Sabha constituencies during the 2019 General Elections.
�However, it is easier said than done, considering the fact that we managed to win only three seats from Assam during the 2014 parliamentary polls. After the defeats in 2014 and 2016, the party�s organisational strength had come down substantially here, but growing anti-incumbency against the BJP regime has helped us revive our apparatus to a large extent. Now the challenge is to translate that into electoral dividends next year,� said an office-bearer of APCC.
With the BJP already launching the nationwide �Sampark Se Samarthan� project, the Congress is also seeking to conduct a mass contact programme in Assam.
As part of the plan, one active party member will be entrusted to maintain regular contact with a group of 100 voters at the booth level. The result of such outreach efforts will be reviewed after every two months.
Besides, each leader and office-bearer has been tasked to involve at least 100-200 new people with the party some way or the other.
To ensure that directives do not remain merely on paper and get implemented on the ground, the leadership has decided that monthly report cards relating to tasks assigned to each office-bearer will be prepared and evaluated.
Registers will also be maintained where duties entrusted to and undertaken by leaders, as well as social, demographic and other factors related to particular constituencies and areas, will be recorded.
Rawat is expected to visit the State again later this month. Party sources said that during the coming trip the AICC general secretary would visit various districts across Assam and interact with Congress workers at the grassroots level.