Ranchi, Sept. 13: Congress’s Jharkhand in-charge B.K. Hariprasad today drew up poll strategies in the state with special emphasis on the food security bill, new land acquisition bill and the cash transfer scheme in tune with the party’s slogan for the 2014 elections.
Addressing block and district presidents at Jharkhand Assembly auditorium this afternoon, Hariprasad assigned them homework for the next three months — regular meetings at panchayat, Assembly segment and state levels — to mobilise public opinion in the party’s favour. The leaders were also asked to make preparations for a state-level rally to commemorate the birth anniversary of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on November 19.
While Hariprasad harped on unity for the party’s revival, state Congress chief Sukhdeo Bhagat and Rajya Sabha MP Pradeep Kumar Balmuchu indulged in a public spat, underlining factionalism in the state unit.
And the AICC general secretary, too, during his two-day visit to Jharkhand, which ended today, got a fair deal of hint about the factional feud in the state unit that requires immediate housekeeping to secure electoral dividends in Jharkhand.
Late on yesterday evening, Balmuchu trained his guns on arch-rival Bhagat, calling him an anubhavhin (without experience) and atiutsahi (over-enthusiastic) state president.
“I don’t know what formula he is following to run the party. He asks party leaders not to lodge their complaints with the media. Has he provided any forum for workers to express their views? Even after so many months, he has not formed the working committee,” Balmuchu alleged.
Bhagat, too, was blunt in his attack on Balmuchu, who served the party for eight years before the former took over earlier this year.
“Unhone virasat mein mujhe ek kuposit party di hai jise raaste par lane mein mere pasine chhooth rahe hai. Itne salon tak unhone party ki jo durgati ki, unhein lajja aani chahiye (I have inherited a malnourished party, which I am finding hard to nurse back to health. Balmuchu should be ashamed of what he has done to the party over all these years),” Bhagat said.
Hariprasad tried to do some damage control. “I will see who said what to whom and why,” he told mediapersons this afternoon.
State Congress spokesperson Stephen Marandi and Ranchi MP Subodh Kant Sahay also tried to cover up the issue, even as the two senior leaders continued their mud-slinging match.
Speaking to The Telegraph, Balmuchu said: “He is no one to seek explanation from me. He is questioning the wisdom of the central leadership, which trusted me for eight years. I expanded the party base from a one-room office to every nook and corner of Jharkhand.”