Thiruvananthapuram: Soon, more women are likely to head the Congress party, at least, at the block level in Kerala. The party leadership in the state has suggested that a woman should be the president of at least one block committee in every district. A slew of proposals, including adequate representation of women in various party posts at all levels, is contained in the draft guidelines released ahead of the reorganisation of the party machinery at various levels.
The Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) has also instructed party functionaries at various levels that there should be enough women representatives in the District Congress Committees (DCC) too. The guidelines need to be reckoned with during the election of new DCC office-bearers and block presidents soon.
Women’s representation should be ensured when the presidents of the constituency-level party committee too are elected, in the future.
The guidelines were handed over to the KPCC office-bearers who are in charge of the districts and the DCC presidents.
Fresh faces along with old guard
During the impending reorganisation current office–bearers who have proved efficiency would be considered for retention.
However, half of the new team should have new faces.
The state leadership has now omitted from the draft guidelines the instruction not to consider again those who have completed five years in office.
The leadership had agreed to the instructions of former Chief Minister Oommen Chandy in this matter. The senior leader had remarked that a large number of current office–bearers at various levels would be out of the list if 5 years was set as the limit. He warned this would lead to discontent among party functionaries.
It was Oommen Chandy who advised that the new list should have at least 50% new faces.
No posts for select local body representatives
In a significant move the Congress won't appoint panchayat presidents and district panchayat members to party posts during the rejig. However, vice presidents of village panchayats and block panchayats as well as members of standing committees in the local self-government bodies will be considered.
Those who work in the public sector and companies that are partially owned by the government too would not be considered.
Advantage full-time activists
The KPCC, meanwhile, observed that those who are willing to work full time for the party should be considered for various posts.
During reorganisation preference will be given to party members who had been an office-bearer of the Kerala Students Union before 2010, but missed out on various posts subsequently.
Adequate representation of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes too should be ensured. However, those who have been indicted in criminal cases wouldn’t be given any posts, the draft guidelines state.
The KPCC office–bearers who are in charge of the districts have been asked to hold meetings with the senior leaders in each district and hand over to the KPCC leadership the panel of appointees to the DCC as soon as possible.
However, the DCC presidents demanded that they need more say in the selection of the office–bearers. They are miffed with the suggestion to involve senior party leaders in the districts.
The state leadership is aiming to announce new DCC office–bearers in a fortnight.