By Amita Verma
Lucknow, Sep 6 (IANS) The Congress is all set to be bombarded with another ‘letter bomb’, this time it comes from Uttar Pradesh.
Nine senior Congress leaders, expelled from the party last year, have sent a letter to Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi asking her to save the party before its slips into “history”.
In a veiled attack on Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, who is the party general secretary in charge of UP, the four-page letter urges Sonia Gandhi to rise above family -“parivaar ke moh se upar uthe”- and restore the democratic traditions of the party.
The letter, signed by former MP Santosh Singh, former minister Satyadev Tripathi, former MLAs Vinod Chaudhary, Bhoodar Narain Mishra, Nekchand Pandey, Swayam Prakash Goswami and Sanjeev Singh, says that the Congress is passing through its ‘worst ever’ phase in Uttar Pradesh.
“There is an apprehension that you are not being apprised of the prevailing situation by those in charge of state affairs. We have been seeking an appointment with you for almost a year but have been denied the same. We had appealed against our expulsion which was illegal but even the central disciplinary committee has not found time to consider our appeal,” the letter says.
The senior Congress leaders further claim that the party posts are being occupied by those who are working on a salary basis and are not even primary members of the party.
“These ‘leaders’ are not familiar with the party’s ideology but are tasked to give direction to the party in UP,” the letter says.
It further says, “These people are the one who are assessing the performances of those leaders who stood like a rock in the Congress during the 1977-80 crisis. Democratic norms are being thrown to the winds and senior leaders are being targeted, insulted and expelled. In fact, we were informed of our expulsion from the media which speaks of the new work culture in the state unit.”
The signatories to the letter have alleged that there is a total lack of communication between the leaders and the party cadres.
They further pointed out that frontal organisations like NSUI and Youth Congress have become defunct in UP.
The leaders have urged the Congress high command to open channels of communication with senior leaders. They have warned that if it continues to turn a blind eye to the prevailing state of affairs, the Congress would hit rock bottom in UP which was once the party’s stronghold.
The letter comes at a time when the party is already facing its worst factional divide in Uttar Pradesh.
While the senior leaders have withdrawn from party activities, the younger leaders have accused the UPCC leadership of promoting caste interests.
The leaders also accuse Priyanka of believing all that is “fed to her” by the state leadership and that she does not bother to meet leaders outside her coterie.