Fed up with the infighting between local satraps, old Congress loyalists and ordinary workers have come together in Chhattisgarh to start a group to win back the Congress vote bank and end the influence of the “tall leaders of the state”.
The unit, named “Indira Vahini”, composed of traditional Congress workers who have been attached with the party since the past four generations, is gearing up take on the Congress insiders, who they claim are helping the BJP for the past 12 years in the state. “Chhattisgarh is among the last states in the country where even now the voters are willing to vote for the party, which was evident in the last Assembly elections in which we lost narrowly. If the tall local leaders had kept the interests of the party supreme, we would have easily won that election. However, due to the infighting and the cozy relationship that our party leaders share with the BJP, the Congress is on the verge of being wiped out from the state. We have come together to make sure that we win back our vote bank and make sure that the party does not fall victim to the ambitions of these leaders,” Bhujit Doshi, the coordinator of the group, said. In the last election, the BJP narrowly won by securing 41.04% of the votes, while the Congress got 40.29% of the votes.
“We are neither with Ajit Jogi nor with Bhupesh Baghel (state Congress president) or Charandas Mahant (former Union minister). We have just come together to stop the rot that is eating the Congress from within,” a Congress functionary, who is a part of this group, said. The group has started interacting with traditional Congress voters in all the 90 Assembly segments of the states to win their trust. “Most of our voters still want to see us back in power in Chhattisgarh. When we meet them, their first question is that why should they vote for Congress when even our own leaders are fighting like sworn enemies. Their second concern is the informal tie-up between our leaders and the BJP leaders, which is known to everyone in the state. We want to change this notion and want to present Congress as an effective option for the people when they go out to vote in 2018 (when the Assembly elections will take place in the state),” said Doshi, a fourth generation Congress worker, whose father Kirit Doshi was a well known journalist of Bastar. Indira Vahini is working on constituting “crack teams” in every district to monitor the Congress leaders who are pro-BJP and publicise such “nexus”. “We have already created our teams in 20 Assembly constituencies and by mid next year, we will have such teams in all the remaining constituencies. The report prepared by our team will be shared with the Congress high command regularly so that the party can take a “informed” decisions for the next Assembly elections,” Doshi said.