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Congress leader stirs commotion, asks to overhaul Mandal politics

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New Delhi: Ahead of the Bihar assembly elections, Congress’s former Union Minister Jitin Prasad’s comment on the party’s Mandal politics is all set to unleash commotion; he has asked the party to fend off its age old Mandal politics wherein a handful of OBCs get advantages. He has also asked the party to overhaul the same, most backward castes and poor upper castes in job reservations get hold of privileges, according to reports.

Picture Credit: dnaindia.com
Picture Credit: dnaindia.com

He further added that Congress should look into the reservation policy for the backward caste people and formulate a more for “imaginative and politically daring inclusion and exclusion of groups from the benefits of reservation”, as quoted in a Times of India report.
The above statement is bound to unleash tremor in the political milieu considering the fact that Bihar assembly elections are awaited. His indirect reference to the more assertive OBCs like the Yadav and the Kurmi community might dent the alliance between RJD, JD(U) and Congress as both these parties have OBC supremos helming the affairs.

He has sought deliberation on the issue during the Rahul-Gandhi’s Chintan Shivir in Mathura on September 21.

“This is the only relevant political plank for the party’s revival in a political market cramped with ossified ideas revolving around caste and religion. If Congress is to break fresh political ground for itself in UP, it can only do so by carving up a social bloc based on progressive branding of the social justice system,” he said in a letter, as quoted in a TOI report.

“The poor among the general castes have to be brought into the ambit of reservation. It is an idea whose time has come given the abysmal state of being for a vast section among them. They suffer the same fate as the weaker backwards — victims of the flawed social justice system,” the letter further added.

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Congress To Use Tribal Card to Regain Power in the Country

Congress to use tribal card to improve countrywide position

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Congress Chhattisgarh
Congress will be using the tribal card to regain dominance and their plan of action will begin from Chhattisgarh. Wikimedia Commons

BY SANDEEP PAURANIK

In order to regain dominance in the country, the Congress is mulling using the tribal card. This plan of action is to be first implemented in Chhattisgarh.

Riding on the success of the Assembly and urban body elections, the Congress feels that it can increase it base through tribals as they constitute 8 per cent of the total population.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the first three Assembly elections in the state, after its formation in 2000, recorded huge victories and came to power. But after the Assembly elections held last year, the scenario changed. After registering a victory in the Assembly elections and then in the urban body polls, the Congress showed that it still dominates the tribal areas.

Rahul Gandhi Congress
Former President of Congress Rahul Gandhi gave an important message while innaugrating the National Tribal Dance Festival in Raipur. Wikimedia Commons

The Congress gave the responsibility of the tribal areas to the tribal leader of Madhya Pradesh Umang Singhar which eventually helped the party. Now, the party is planning to spread out nationwide through Chhattisgarh.

Former party president Rahul Gandhi, while inaugurating the National Tribal Dance Festival in Raipur, gave a message to the tribals who are here to participate in the festival that the Chhattisgarh government is working for all the sections and this is the reason why there has been a downward trend in naxal attacks and the state economy has also improved.

The Congress is planning to publicise the improvements in Chhattisgarh throughout the country because the tribal population in the state is 32 per cent.

BJP media panellist Sandeep Sharma, however, claims that the party’s base has not shrunk. He said till Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh were not divided, the Congress was strong in the area but in the elections held after three years of the bifurcation, the BJP won the Assembly elections and was in power for 15 years. Though we faced defeat in the 2018 elections, the only reason was that people wanted a change but they were not angry with the BJP, he claimed.

The BJP won in the Lok Sabha elections and the margin in the urban body elections was also not much. So, it would be inappropriate to say that the BJP’s base has shrunk, he said adding that in one year the Congress’ base has declined by 9 per cent whereas in Assembly elections it got 12 per cent more votes and in urban body elections the margin was 3 per cent.

Congress
The Congress is planning to publicise the improvements in Chhattisgarh throughout the country. Wikimedia Commons

Analysing the political landscape of the state, political analyst Rudra Awasthi said, “When it was Madhya Pradesh then the Congress had stronghold in Chhattisgarh. Several big leaders were also from the state but after the formation of Chhattisgarh since Ajit Jogi was accused of being a fake tribal the Congress lost its stronghold over the tribals. Though it continued to dominate in some of the areas which helped it in regaining the power.

“As of now, the Congress has started including the tribals with the backward class. First Bhupesh Baghel was the state chief of the party and he was replaced by Mohan Markam as he became the Chief Minister. During the Assembly elections, the Congress talked about the identity of the tribals which helped the party. After winning the elections, the decisions of the Congress government were in favour of the tribals which helped the party in the urban body elections,” said Awasthi.

Also Read- Unity in Diversity is the Strength of the Country: Rahul Gandhi

The Congress is mulling over spreading its message to the tribals across the country through the three-day festival going on here. For this several senior leaders of the party will attend the festival and share the government’s schemes while giving the message that the Congress government in the state has brought a positive and a significant change in the lives of the tribals. (IANS)