On the first day of the plenary meet, the Congress Steering Committee unanimously decided not to hold elections to the CWC and authorised party chief Mallikarjun Kharge to nominate its members, at a key meeting which members of the Gandhi family skipped.
The decision set the tone for the three-day brainstorming conclave to make the grand old party poll-ready ahead of the next round of assembly elections including in Chhattisgarh and the 2024 parliamentary elections.
At the 85th plenary session, the party also proposed an amendment to its constitution to include former Congress prime ministers and former AICC chiefs as permanent members of the Congress Working Committee (CWC), a move that would ensure the automatic inclusion of Manmohan Singh, Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi in the party's highest decision-making body.
Congress leaders Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi arrived in Chhattisgarh capital Raipur on Friday afternoon to attend the party’s three-day 85th plenary session that began here in the morning.
On the second day of the plenary session, Congress carried out 85 amendments in its constitution to provide a 50 per cent reservation to scheduled castes (SCs), scheduled tribes (STs), other backward classes (OBCs), women, youth and minorities in its working committee and at all party positions.
According to the amended constitution of the party, the Congress Working Committee (CWC) will now include former prime ministers from the party and former AICC chiefs, besides leaders of the Congress in both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha.
Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra arrived in Raipur on the second day of the meeting to attend the party's three-day 85th plenary session, and to accord her a grand welcome, a stretch of road in front of the city airport was carpeted with a thick layer of rose petals.
More than 6,000 kilograms of roses were used to decorate the road for about two km where folk artists wearing colourful traditional dresses were also seen performing on a long stage erected along the route, a Congress leader said.
The Congress will bring a legislation against hate crimes in the country if voted to power. The assertion is part of the party's 58-point political resolution that was adopted at its 85th plenary session on the second day.
"Congress promises to pass an anti-discrimination law to prohibit discrimination on the basis of religion, caste, gender or language in the supply of goods and services that are made available to the public in general such as housing, hostels, hotels, clubs, etc," the resolution said.
Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge said his party is willing to forge a viable alternative by aligning with like-minded parties in order to get rid of the "anti-people" BJP government in the 2024 Lok Sabha polls, and is ready to make any sacrifice required to achieve the goal.
In his address at the Congress' 85th plenary session, Kharge also took a swipe at Prime Minister Narendra Modi, alleging that the "pradhan sevak of Delhi, who gets advertisements printed every day, is serving his own friend".
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Sunday said the party will keep asking questions about Gautam Adani till the truth comes out, as he flayed BJP leaders for coming out in support of the industrialist in Parliament.
He also said the party should formulate a new plan to carry forward the "tapasya " undertaken through the Bharat Jodo Yatra and that he along with the entire country will participate in it, indicating another such initiative. Launching a strong attack on the government on the Adani issue, he charged that Adani was working against the country by cornering the entire wealth.
Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Sunday said that ahead of the Lok Sabha polls, there are expectations from Opposition parties to unite but most expectations are from the Congress.
She also exhorted Congress workers to take the message of the party and the "failures" of the government to the people.