Polls on agenda as Congress Working Committee begins 2-day Hyderabad meet on September 16, 2023

    September 15, 2023 07:57 pm | Updated September 16, 2023 01:21 am IST – New Delhi

    Being battle-ready for the 2024 Lok Sabha election, preparations for the Assembly elections in crucial States, current economic and political issues, and the coming together of the Indian National Developmental, Inclusive Alliance (INDIA) parties would be among issues that would be deliberated by the newly constituted Congress Working Committee (CWC) in Hyderabad over the weekend.

    Assembly elections in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Telangana and Mizoram would be a key focus of the two-day long brainstorming.

    The current economic and political issues include inflation, unemployment, strife-torn Manipur, the latest allegations against the Adani Group, and the recent terror attack in Jammu and Kashmir, among others.

    On Saturday, 84 CWC members including permanent and special invitees, and Chief Ministers of the four Congress-ruled States will be attending the Congress party’s highest decision-making body.

    Editorial | Election and selection: On the new Congress Working Committee 

    A day later, on September 17, the extended CWC meet will see 147 party members participating as Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) chiefs and Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leaders have also been invited to be part of the discussions.

    With a clear focus on the upcoming Telangana Assembly election, the party’s top leadership will not only hold a public rally on the outskirts of Hyderabad but will also launch guarantees on the lines of Karnataka.

    The Telangana meet of the CWC is also the first after over two dozen parties came together in the past four months to forge the INDIA bloc in a bid to take on the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) in the next Lok Sabha election.

    “After the Bharat Jodo Yatra and the formation of the INDIA alliance, the political situation in the country is changing gradually and you will see in 2024,” Congress general secretary (organisation) K.C. Venugopal told reporters at a press conference in Hyderabad.

    Also read | Congress mulls Bharat Jodo Yatra 2.0 ahead of Lok Sabha polls

    Party leaders indicated that there could also be discussions on the second edition of the Bharat Jodo Yatra and on a joint agitational plan of INDIA bloc to unitedly take on the BJP.

    However, these plans are likely to take shape only after the five-day Special Session of Parliament between September 18 and 22, gets over.

    Though the government has listed a discussion on the parliamentary journey of 75 years starting from Samvidhan Sabha (Constituent Assembly) and a few Bills including one with regard to the appointment of Chief Election Commissioner and Other Election Commissioners, the Opposition parties expressed their apprehension that the government could bring in last-minute agenda.

    “They have called a meeting on September 17 evening. Let us see what they [the government] say,” Mr. Venugopal said.

    Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge, on August 20, had reconstituted the CWC in which several news faces like Shashi Tharoor, Sachin Pilot, Manish Tewari, and Gaurav Gogoi were inducted as members. The party’s highest decision-making body has 39 regular members, 32 permanent invitees and 13 special invitees including 15 women.

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