BHOPAL: For those aspiring Congress tickets in Madhya Pradesh, the new criterion is a minimum of 15,000 likes on their Facebook page and 5,000 followers on Twitter.
The MP Congress Committee issued a circular on Sunday making a major presence on the social media compulsory for all its office bearers in the state and districts, sitting MLAs and aspiring MLAs.
The order signed by MP Congress Committee vice-president in-charge of organization Chandraprabhash Shekhar mentioned that all those aspiring party tickets should have at least 15,000 likes on their Facebook page and a minimum of 5,000 followers on Twitter.
The order mentions that all party office bearers, present legislators and aspiring MLAs should have an account on Twitter, a Facebook page and presence on WhatsApp groups at the booth-level in their constituency. It also directs every aspiring candidate to like and share the party's official tweets and posts on Facebook.
The Congress IT Cell has directed all the party office-bearers and sitting MLAs to submit details of their Twitter handle and Facebook account by September 15.
According to state Congress' new IT cell head Abhay Tiwari, the latest move will help in bringing the entire party cadre on one platform to ensure better coordination. It will also help the party's candidates to connect better with local issues as the party wants to contest every seat on local issues.
He denied that the order would cause problems for ticket aspirant in rural areas. "There is no area where there isn't internet connectivity. Everyone has smartphones and teams who are well versed and active on social media platforms."
Recently, Congress state president Kamal Nath is said to have expressed his displeasure with the functioning of the IT cell. IT cell head Dharmendra Vajpayee was dumped and in came Tiwari, who headed the Congress online campaign in the 2017 Gujarat election.
Reacting to the Congress' attempts to streamline its social media apparatus, MP Minister of State for Cooperatives and BJP MLA from Narela (Bhopal) Vishwas Sarang said: "let the Congress do whatever it wants in the virtual world, but its base has drastically eroded in the real world."