'Makes no sense': Congress drops no-alcohol clause from membership form of workers

Sources said that there was also a headcount of leaders present at the meeting who consume alcohol and over 50 per cent said they drink while some remained mum.

Published: 27th October 2021 03:54 AM  |   Last Updated: 27th October 2021 08:35 AM   |  A+A-

Congress Flag

Congress flag. (File photo)

Express News Service

NEW DELHI:  After several leaders flagged that the clause of abstention from alcohol in the membership form for new workers is not feasible in present times, the Congress decided to drop it.

The matter was raised at the meeting of AICC general secretaries, in charges and state chiefs chaired by Congress president Sonia Gandhi to discuss membership drives, upcoming assembly elections and agitation against the BJP government.

Punjab in charge and Rajasthan MLA Harish Chaudhary, Goa in charge Dinesh Gundu Rao, Assam in charge Jitendra Singh were among others who highlighted the high alcohol consumption in the states which they taking care of and also in their own states.

During the meeting, former Congress chief Rahul Gandhi said it makes no sense in present times to have the abstention clause and then asked for a show of hands of people in the room who drink.

Sources said that there was also a headcount of leaders present at the meeting who consume alcohol and over 50 per cent said they drink while some remained mum.

“It was decided to immediately drop the clause,” a party insider said.

The grand old party is planning to launch a membership drive from November 1 to till March 31 next year before the organisational elections are held.

Those willing to take primary membership of the party were supposed to give a declaration of abstention from alcohol and drugs.   

Clarifying the rule meant for new members, senior leader and Congress’ Central Election Authority chairman Madhusudan Mistry said that it was an old form and was part of the party constitution.

The clause in the membership form has not been changed for the last several decades, the party veteran added. 



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