THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: State Congress president K Sudhakaran's decision to have only a 51-member committee has triggered a mad scramble among leaders to be included in the panel. But lobbying is mostly on to become the president of the respective DCCs. But there is concern about the emergence of a large number of disgruntled leaders who will be excluded from the existing jumbo committee.
It is true that the bane of Congress has always been jumbo committees where there have been instances of senior leaders not knowing everyone. If during Ramesh Chennithala's tenure as state Congress president, there were 36 general secretaries and vice presidents as well as 45 secretaries, it shot up to 55 and 96 respectively during Mullappally Ramachandran's term.
The jumbo committee’s purpose was never met, with the majority of office-bearers not being accountable. When Sudhakaran reiterated that merit alone would be the criterion to be chosen among the 51-member new party committee, leaders of various factions wholeheartedly agreed to it.
But they are aware that it is not going to be rosy once the list is announced by the central leadership by July 15. "There will be chaos once the list is announced. If those included in the committee are meritorious, then there will be less chance of bickering. I understand that only exceptional leaders will be included in the new party structure," Chalakudy MP Benny Behanan told The New Indian Express.
The overhauling is happening at a time when the Congress is at its lowest ebb and is trying to bounce back under the aegis of Sudhakaran.
He is treading cautiously as he is aware that factional leaders are waiting for an opportunity to take cudgels against him. This time, there will not be any sharing of seats, which will be handpicked by Sudhakaran and his team of three working presidents Kodikunnil Suresh, MP, and MLAs PT Thomas and T Siddique.
But, other legislators and MPs will not be considered citing ‘one man one post’ which would enable new leaders to get a reckoning. Sudhakaran had formed a five-member committee comprising Opposition Leader V D Satheesan, Ramesh Chennithala, Oommen Chandy and Mullappally to finalise the guidelines.