Rahul youth brigade gets ready to question top leaders at meet

Rahul Gandhi's 'youth brigade' is preparing to do some tough talking at the Congress party's chintan shivir in Jaipur, seeking "accountability" from those holding powerful positions in the party.

Indian Youth Congress (IYC) president Rajiv Satav is learnt to be holding long deliberations with office-bearers and leaders in this regard. While it is known that senior party leaders manage to get tickets for their candidates in every election, Rahul's youth brigade would like them to be made accountable for the performance of their nominees. Similarly, they want leaders holding party positions like general secretary, PCC chief or DCC president to be held accountable for the performance of the party in their area.

IYC delegates are preparing to raise these issues at the January 18-19 chintan shivir where the IYC and NSUI have been given substantial representation for the first time since the party started holding such brainstorming sessions.

There were less than half-a-dozen representatives from the youth and students' wings of the Congress at the chintan shivirs at Pachmarhi in 1998 and at Shimla in 2003. At Jaipur though, the IYC (64) and NSUI (54) constitute about one-third of the 345 delegates. Their voices in Jaipur would signal the direction of the winds of change once Rahul formally takes over as No 2 in the party.

"If they (veteran leaders) ask any of us (IYC office-bearers) what we have done in the past one or two years for the party, we can provide an answer immediately. Ask a PCC chief or any other senior party leader about their performance and you draw a blank. Why should the party suffer because of their non-performance? There has to be some yardstick to judge the performance of every party leader and there should be some system of rewards and punishment," said a senior IYC office-bearer.

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