Farhan Akhtar, Paes turn Trinamool advisors

The youth wing of the Trinamool Congress has apparently taken a leaf out of Rahul Gandhi’s book.

kolkata Updated: Jul 25, 2011 23:43 IST
Ravik Bhattacharya
Ravik Bhattacharya
Hindustan Times

The youth wing of the Trinamool Congress has apparently taken a leaf out of Rahul Gandhi’s book. The All India Trinamool Congress Yuva launched its all-India membership drive on Monday — its formula similar to the one Congress general secretary Gandhi adopted to rejuvenate the Youth Congress.

Abhishek Banerjee, all India president of Yuva, is scheduled to leave for Delhi soon. The unit has roped in Farhan Akhtar, Leander Paes and Sam Pitroda as advisors.

Abhishek is the son of the chief minister and party chief Mamata Banerjee’s eldest brother Amit Banerjee. He is computer savvy, has an MBA degree and is fluent in English. Banerjee has put him in charge of the youth wing to project a pan-Indian face of Trinamool.

At a media conference in Kolkata's Trinamool Bhawan on Monday, Abhishek said: “Mamata Banerjee will chair the advisory committee. Stalwarts from different fields — from entertainment industry Farhan Akhtar, from sports Leander Paes and from technology Sam Pitroda – will be part of the committee.”

Dr Subrata Moitra, union railway minister Dinesh Trivedi, state industry minister Partha Chatterjee are also in the committee.

“There are around 1,000 youths who have shown interest in joining us in Delhi,” he said. “We would also visit states like Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh and open offices in state capitals and Union Territories.”

Asked about the similarity with Rahul Gandhi’s nationwide Youth Congress membership drive, Abhishek said: “I admire him. But we are two different individuals and there is no comparison.”

“We will shortly hold meetings in every district and there will be elections for the post of presidents and secretaries,” Abhishek said. The party plans to complete the process by September.

“At least 70% of the youth in the country shy away from politics. We will build future leaders,” he said.

First Published: Jul 25, 2011 23:42 IST