Udaipur, May 15

Bharat Jodo calls emanated from the venue of Udaipur Nav Sankalp Shivir that concluded here on Sunday with Congress leader Rahul Gandhi asking cadres to go to the people and re-establish the “lost connect with them” and party president Sonia Gandhi announcing a mass contact programme from October 2 minutes after Rahul’s call for hard work.

There are no shortcuts to success, success will come from the sweat of the brow, Rahul told leaders as the 422 strong delegation adopted the Udaipur Declaration that moots sweeping internal reforms to strengthen the Congress organizationally and electorally.

Through six separate resolutions covering organizational, political, economic, agricultural, social justice and youth affairs, the Congress today approved “one person-one post”, “one family-one ticket” rule with exceptions for leaders who discharge party roles for five years before seeking a party ticket; 50 pc posts across AICC for those under 50; and three new departments of public insight, election management and cadre training to make the party battle ready.

The critical political resolution left a door open for alliances “based on political circumstances of the time” and pledged a constant connect with like-minded forces even as Rahul in his closing remarks signalled the pre-eminence of Congress in the opposition space with Aam Aadmi Party and other regional forces gaining sway across states.

“Ours is an ideological battle to defeat the RSS and BJP ideology and organization. This is no easy battle and a regional party cannot fight this because this is an ideological battle. The RSS is fighting the Congress ideology. The BJP is attacking the Congress and not regional parties because the BJP knows that the regional parties have their place but they cannot defeat it as they have no ideological basis. The regional parties have varied approaches as against a centralized Congress approach.”

To further stress the point, Rahul said Congress was the sole “pan-India party unlike regional outfits that are caste based.”

On the ideological front, the Congress political resolution steered clear of “soft Hindutva” despite calls to project the same from some veterans, including Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel. The party instead attacked the ruling BJP for spawning “hate and violence” and said, “Indian nationalism is the basis of the Congress while the ruling party’s pseudo nationalism is a means to grab power.”

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