BHOPAL: Congress veteran Digvijaya Singh on Thursday said he will not contest the 2018 assembly elections, even as he announced another yatra — this time a political one, with an eye on the polls.
Singh, who was appointed head of the party’s election coordination committee by AICC chief Rahul Gandhi earlier three days ago, said that neither he, nor any member of the panel will contest the polls. “It is a condition we laid down during the meeting today. Members of this committee will not contest the November assembly elections. Anyone who is interested in a party ticket should resign (from the panel) now,” Singh said. He had earlier said he is not in the race for CM.
Singh, who completed his ‘apolitical’ Narmada Parikrama last month — creating political ripples along the way — will embark upon a political yatra now. On May 31, the 13-member coordination committee will start its yatra from Ram Raja temple in Orchha in Tikamgarh district. This is the only temple that worships Lord Rama as ‘king’.
Diggy: Yatra to mobilise Cong workers before assembly elections
Singh said, “We held the coordination committee’s first meeting today. We are starting the yatra from Ram Raja temple in Tikamgarh and will be in Chhatarpur on June 1. The yatra will pass through all the districts of MP and conclude on August 31.”
The political yatra is to mobilise Congress workers before the assembly elections, Singh said.
The former CM was appointed head of Congress election coordination committee in MP by AICC president Rahul Gandhi earlier this week. On June 2, the coordination “yatra” will be in Panna. But with Rahul Gandhi’s farmers’ rally scheduled for June 6 in Mandsaur, the yatra will be stalled from June 3 to 6.
PCC chief Kamal Nath explained that Singh and the coordination committee have been given the task of mobilising Congress workers and leaders. “Some of our influential leaders and effective workers are sitting at home. Some have been threatened, some were expelled and others who resigned. There are also those who are of Congress ideology but are not members of the party,” Nath said. “The party has to bring all these workers back into its fold and distribute electoral responsibilities to them. Our intention is to unite everyone.”
Singh said not just the workers and prominent leaders, the coordination committee will also contact all those who contested elections in rural and urban civic polls because such persons have influence over eight to 10 booths.
The coordination committee will also work on identifying fake voters in electoral rolls of every constituency. “After the worker mobilisation exercise ends on August 31, the coordination committee will be given other responsibilities,” Singh said.