Trials & tribulations of a Cong ticket seeker
Many are the troubles and tribulations that ticket seekers in the Congress go through. Finding a suitable lobby to align with, a senior leader or two to be identified with ...india Updated: Nov 08, 2003 16:44 IST
Many are the troubles and tribulations that ticket seekers in the Congress go through. Finding a suitable lobby to align with, a senior leader or two to be identified with and then running after them to have their name cleared, it needs stamina, thick skin, and sometimes a fat wallet.
Indeed, politics need not be a zero sum game. For some, the sums involved are huge, going by a story that is doing the rounds in Rajasthan Congress circles. The Rajasthan Congress received somewhere around 12,000 applications for tickets. As the story goes, several of them paid money at the district level to have their names sent to the Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC).
That was just the first step and obviously not enough. The names had to be sent to Delhi for approval and the next stage was to ensure getting included in the panel being prepared. Some Congress leaders saw an opportunity here.
They assured ticket aspirants of sending their names to Delhi, in return for amounts ranging from Rs 20,000 to Rs 1.5 lakh.
But there was no guarantee that they would get the party tickets, it was made absolutely clear. For that, it was up to them to manage things in Delhi. There were some with no other way out and had little hope otherwise, so they paid up.
But then they had doubts. How does one know their names were forwarded at all, they asked.
With money pocketed, something needed to be done to convince these aspirants as they became restive. A letter addressed to the party’s Central observer for the state was typed out, with a list of names. For good measure, it was also leaked to a prominent local daily. The copy of the letter and the news report served the purpose and the pressure eased off.
But the list published in the newspaper created a major uproar. Many leaders who had little doubt about their candidature found their names missing and some little known person listed from their constituency. They got after the senior leaders. The amazed party bosses told them the news was baseless and there was no such list sent to anyone in Delhi.
First Published: Nov 08, 2003 16:44 IST