New Delhi, Sep 18 : With a target of enrolling 5 crore members, the Congress is set to launch a nationwide drive from next month, an exercise which will be carried out digitally to check bogus membership that has been a major concern for the party.
In a circular issued by Congress General Secretary (Organisation) K C Venugopal, the party leaders have been asked to undertake door-to-door campaign for membership in all states, except Maharashtra, Haryana and Jharkhand which go to polls in the next few months.
The grand old party, which has been severely hit by electoral debacles, is looking for revival to take on the resurgent BJP. In this direction, the party’s reins were handed over to Sonia Gandhi once again over a month back, after her son Rahul Gandhi stepped down from the post of Congress President in the wake of debacle in the last Lok Sabha polls.
With the BJP surging ahead in terms of electoral successes and organizational activities, the Congress has set a target of enrolling 5 crore members, which is still much less than that of BJP’s 18 crore figure.
“It has been decided that the membership drive will be through digital and traditional paper mode, both. All the frontal organisations and departments shall participate in this drive in their respective booth areas,” said the note accessed by IANS.
Emphasis on digital mode of membership is significant since the party has suffered due to bogus membership.
The party has asked its office bearers to ensure that bio data of new members are uploaded in the digital format with a photograph and Voter ID Card.
The online membership form is available on the official website of the Congress party. In the form, it has been mentioned that the new member should upload their EPIC (Election I-Card) as an identity proof. After giving certain details, they would be getting the communication via mail or SMS from the party.
According to the earlier practice, a member would be required to fill a form without providing any proof. With the digital format, a potential member will have to satisfy the party about his or her credentials and belief in the party ideology.
At a recent meeting held by Congress General Secretary in-charge of eastern Uttar Pradesh Priyanka Gandhi, former Union Minister Ram Lal Rahi raised the issue of bogus membership and said the membership drive should be genuine and not only on papers.
Another party leader said the party should communicate what it stands for, just like the RSS and the BJP are propagating their ideology. Mere paper work has already damaged the party, he said.
After successful electoral gains, the BJP has got 7 crore new members, raising the total number of its members to a whopping 18 crore. The BJP’s target was to increase its members by 20 per cent but it surpassed that and touched 50 per cent.