Mangalore, May 5 : The Congress party in Karnataka is launching a massive awareness campaign to mobilize its cadres to tell the people of its policies and programmes and remove disinformation.
The campaign seeks to strengthen the Congress Party in the State which will also have an impact on the coming State Assembly elections.
The campaign, which will pick up from Panchayat level to District level, will include grass root workers and also incorporate the local artists and intellectuals for campaigning.
The campaign has been named "Gandhi Nadige" or Gandhi walk. It will comprise various Jathas (groups) to cover villages on foot. Their objective will be to mobilize and educate people on various issues like communal harmony, secularism and Gandhian thoughts.
The campaign is hoped to motivate grass-root level workers and reactivate them. Besides, it will set a stage for mass participation and acceptance of the party by masses.
"Today, people are forgetting about the contribution of Mahatma Gandhi to the nation. Our objective is to make people conscious of Gandhian thought and action," said Subhada Rao, one of the organizers of Gandhi Nadige and member of Karnataka City Council.
"The Congress party is rich in what it can offer to the country but it has no salesmen. We want to take on that role. We also want to train those individuals who want to be active at the ground level," Rao added. The Gandhi Nadige will start simultaneously from five border villages of the chosen district and these Gandhi Nadige Jathas will have a core team of 20 members. They will also include "intimate interactive theatre" group whose job will be to motivate people.
Jathas will reach out to voters through house-to-house module. The Congress party feels that there is a need to involve the young generation in the task of preserving the secular and democratic fabric.
Nadige committees will be set up at Village, Gram Panchayat (village council), Block and District-DCC (District level Gandhi Nadige Committee and Block level) levels. Nodal persons will be identified at all levels.
It is hoped that Jathas will reach out to the unreachable, develop the spirit of enquiry among silent masses, install confidence and motivate grass-root level workers and silent sympathizers.
Each Jatha will have its own route map and may take 12-15 days to cover all villages and towns. All the streams will culminate on single day at Mangalore.
The campaign will provide facts and internalize functional awareness on various issues being misinterpreted by vested interests. The sole objective of this entire exercise to enable people to know the truth and propagation of Gandhian thought.
Different strategies will also include formation of social Action groups at village-level to combat the forces which are instigating communities against each other.
The workers will explain to the people over issues like abolition of POTA, accusation that the party is 'soft' on terrorism, the Congress role in ensuring the security of the nation. Current controversies like price rice and various challenges faced by the people will be explained. The workers will serve as a link between party and the people, and explain government's achievements.
The Gandhi Nadige will seek to identify and raise a force of full time party workers.
The communication techniques will include 'intimate interactive theatre'. The Jathas will consist of singers and speakers. They will display banners, wall writings, pamphlet distribution, public meetings and one-to-one discussions.
Organizing sports and cultural events at local level and building teams of youth, debates/ elocution competitions to different age groups will also be a part of Jathas's profile.
Under the capacity building of grass-root level workers, Master trainers and Gram Panchayat level workers will be chosen. Two to three individuals will be chosen in each Panchayat (village council) to form public opinion and support party activities.
Around 60 master trainers may be identified. At least 50 per cent of the Master trainers are expected to be women.
Training at Gram Panchayat level is being organized in batches of 30-40 workers with each one having at least three master trainers.
At Gram Panchayat level, graduates (20-30 years) with good communication skills ware being preferred and they would be provided three-day training. The selection will be out of the six identified names by Block level committees. District committee has made the final selection.
The training has been done at two levels-Master trainers and GP level workers. It includes training about things like public speaking, interaction with media, team building, confidence building, issue based agitation and protests, constitution of social action groups and other things.
Preparing the ground level workers to respond to frequently asked questions, camps for youth and young, establishing linkage between party achievements and living examples of beneficiaries besides organizing sports and cultural and social activities will also be part of the programme.
District Campaign Committee and Block Campaign Committee will be responsible for implementation of campaign in the district. DCC will constitute a separate committee at district and also at block level to implement the campaign and supervise. In addition to this, a Nodal person will be nominated at every stage who will act as convener. y K. G. Vasuki