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Major organisational shake-up in State Cong

By PRANJAL BHUYAN

GUWAHATI, Aug 30 - The Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) is likely to witness a major organisational shake-up within the next few weeks as the party looks to revive itself after the massive defeat suffered by it during the last Assembly elections.

APCC leaders told The Assam Tribune that with the selection of Ripun Bora as the new State party chief, work has already started at the ground level to revive the organisation and re-energise it by infusion of fresh blood in the leadership structure.

�There will be a major shake-up in the State Congress. The new APCC chief has started the process of reviewing the electoral defeat. During the last few days, he has travelled to the Barak Valley, the hill districts, Lower Assam, Central Assam and is now in Upper Assam. The review is being carried out at the block, mandal and district levels and it will be followed by the first meeting of the State executive in Guwahati on September 4. The meeting will analyse and ascertain the reasons behind the party�s humiliating defeat in the Assembly polls and will also discuss the future course of action,� said a senior APCC office-bearer.

He said that as per feedback received from the local level so far, a number of factors have been highlighted as reasons behind the electoral debacle.

�The primary reasons were wrong selection of candidates, dissidence within the party during the third term of the government which virtually halted all official business for over three years, poor image of the ministers of the Tarun Gogoi cabinet and failure on the inflation front, among others. The issue of rhino killings also had an impact in Central and Upper Assam. Barring one or two, almost all the other ministers of Gogoi�s last cabinet were failures on the performance front,� said the leader.

Congress leaders admitted that selection of wrong candidates played a major role in ensuring defeat of party nominees in many seats.

�We lost Lakhimpur as OBC and upper caste voters deserted us after we gave ticket to an SC candidate. Lakhimpur is the only unreserved seat in that region and all other constituencies are reserved ones. This also impacted us in other seats. In Mahmora, the party denied ticket to Sarat Saikia for no reason. What was the result? Not only did we lose that seat but an entire community deserted us in Upper Assam. Similarly in constituencies like Behali, Tezpur, Patacharkuchi and Hajo, selection of wrong candidates led to defeat. Some mid-rung leaders of the All India Congress Committee (AICC) gave wrong feedback to Rahul Gandhi. We focused on young candidates, but many of them lacked credibility and mass base,� said a leader.

He said that a major �top to bottom� organisational change is expected to take place in APCC in the near future.

�The change will be from block to Pradesh Congress level. No doubt, youth leaders will be given major roles, but only those who have credibility. The new State government is already under scanner and once the �honeymoon period� of six months is over, we will take to the streets on all issues which affect the common people,� said a State Congress leader.

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Major organisational shake-up in State Cong

GUWAHATI, Aug 30 - The Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) is likely to witness a major organisational shake-up within the next few weeks as the party looks to revive itself after the massive defeat suffered by it during the last Assembly elections.

APCC leaders told The Assam Tribune that with the selection of Ripun Bora as the new State party chief, work has already started at the ground level to revive the organisation and re-energise it by infusion of fresh blood in the leadership structure.

�There will be a major shake-up in the State Congress. The new APCC chief has started the process of reviewing the electoral defeat. During the last few days, he has travelled to the Barak Valley, the hill districts, Lower Assam, Central Assam and is now in Upper Assam. The review is being carried out at the block, mandal and district levels and it will be followed by the first meeting of the State executive in Guwahati on September 4. The meeting will analyse and ascertain the reasons behind the party�s humiliating defeat in the Assembly polls and will also discuss the future course of action,� said a senior APCC office-bearer.

He said that as per feedback received from the local level so far, a number of factors have been highlighted as reasons behind the electoral debacle.

�The primary reasons were wrong selection of candidates, dissidence within the party during the third term of the government which virtually halted all official business for over three years, poor image of the ministers of the Tarun Gogoi cabinet and failure on the inflation front, among others. The issue of rhino killings also had an impact in Central and Upper Assam. Barring one or two, almost all the other ministers of Gogoi�s last cabinet were failures on the performance front,� said the leader.

Congress leaders admitted that selection of wrong candidates played a major role in ensuring defeat of party nominees in many seats.

�We lost Lakhimpur as OBC and upper caste voters deserted us after we gave ticket to an SC candidate. Lakhimpur is the only unreserved seat in that region and all other constituencies are reserved ones. This also impacted us in other seats. In Mahmora, the party denied ticket to Sarat Saikia for no reason. What was the result? Not only did we lose that seat but an entire community deserted us in Upper Assam. Similarly in constituencies like Behali, Tezpur, Patacharkuchi and Hajo, selection of wrong candidates led to defeat. Some mid-rung leaders of the All India Congress Committee (AICC) gave wrong feedback to Rahul Gandhi. We focused on young candidates, but many of them lacked credibility and mass base,� said a leader.

He said that a major �top to bottom� organisational change is expected to take place in APCC in the near future.

�The change will be from block to Pradesh Congress level. No doubt, youth leaders will be given major roles, but only those who have credibility. The new State government is already under scanner and once the �honeymoon period� of six months is over, we will take to the streets on all issues which affect the common people,� said a State Congress leader.

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