More youth to participate in Congress session

Last Updated: Mon, Jan 14, 2013 16:30 hrs

New Delhi, Jan 14 (IANS) Bearing a clear stamp of the Congress' de facto number two Rahul Gandhi, the Congress brainstorming session (chintan shivir) in Jaipur Jan 18-20 will see a greater representation from the party's youth wings, party sources said Monday.

According to Congress sources, out of around 345 delegates expected to attend the session, over 30 percent would be from the Indian Youth Congress (IYC) and National Students Union of India (NSUI).

"Participation of youth leaders is certainly greater this time," a senior All India Congress Committee (AICC) member told IANS on the condition of anonymity.

"Young leaders have to be involved in the roadmap for the 2014 Lok Sabha polls," he said.

Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi, who leads the two youth wings, is in charge of the party's coordination panel for the 2014 elections.

Rahul Gandhi believes in greater participation of the youth in the political process and has been giving election tickets for IYC members in the past few years.

Sources said issues like pre- and post-poll alliances, women's empowerment and political and economic challenges are likely to dominate the session.

The last such session was held in 2003 in Shimla, Himachal Pradesh, after which the Congress came to power in 2004 general elections. The United Progressive Alliance was formed post-polls.

How to pursue growth amid a slowdown in the economy and foreign policy are also likely to be debated during the session, said the sources.

Various sub-groups, formed by the party to prepare discussion papers on the political, economic and social issues, have submitted their reports which are being reviewed by Congress chief Sonia Gandhi, said sources.

Small groups of delegates will deliberate on these discussion papers during the first two days of the session. The AICC session on the final day is expected to pass some resolutions based on the outcome of these debates, said party sources.

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