It's a 'do or die' for Cong this time
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It's a 'do or die' for Cong this time

Faced with a 'do or die' situation, It's no longer wilting under shock defeat of Dec 2004 polls.

india Updated: Apr 03, 2004 14:03 IST

With a 'do or die' situation staring in its face, Congress is no longer wilting under the shock defeat of December 2004 polls. Instead, it has come up with an audacious battle plan, with alliance being the main mantra, much to the chagrin of NDA chin-waggers.

Target middle-class: The party has in place a team to reach out for the middle class with clarity and substance. It's aiming at deflating the "feel-good" and "India shining" hype by putting facts in perspective.

Target Governance: Not just the great Vajpayee factor, the party has decided to take on the BJP stalwarts on on-to-one basis. Pranab Mukherjee will counter Vajpayeeas well as Advani while Kapil Sibal will challenge Arun Jaitley.

Suave Salman Khursheed will encounter excessively vocal Pramod Mahajan whereas Ambika Soni will stop Sushma Swaraj.

The party is already whipping up the issue of joblessness, agricultural backwardness and the lie of the shingin India campaign.

Target Youth: Conscious of the fact that Vajpayee is the current craze of the youth, Congress' 'woo young" strategy seems to be revolving around the 'Priyanka-Rahul'. The buzz is that they may formally join active politics and contest elections.

Election Management

In a bid to tone up the organisation, party president Sonia Gandhi has overhauled the party machinery. Former CMs Digvijay SIngh and Ashok Gehlot have been involved in the poll process as 'special invitees' whereas Kerala's Ramesh Chennithala has been elevated to CWC. So were PR Das Munshi and Prithvi Raj Chavan.

First Published: Mar 19, 2004 18:00 IST