Rahul, who has launched an initiative to elicit the views of a cross section of people for inputs to draft the Congress manifesto, was interacting with party's local body representatives, pradhans, NGOs and bureaucrats at the Mahatma Gandhi's ashram in Sevagram.
"50 percent of India’s population is women. India can only be half strong, half proud, half powerful if we don't empower this 50 percent. It can be only a half super power. If we cannot offer jobs to our crores of youth in a systematic way, if we cannot empower our pradhans, MPs, MLAs and other elected representatives, our country cannot be a super power," he said during an interaction here.
Strongly advocating for decentralization of the process of selection of candidates for Assembly and Lok Sabha elections by parties to include grassroots-level public representatives, Rahul said, "Today, in our party and BJP, 5-7 people decide all candidates. This lies in the root of corruption. The day we include the people in the process, 50 percent of corruption will be gone."
"Today, the pradhans, MPs, MLAs does not have the powers which come with their position. Our representatives in local bodies have no voice in the selection of candidates who contest Vidhan Sabha and parliamentary elections. I assure you, I will ensure their voice is heard. I promise you I will do it cent percent," he added.
Rahul was responding to a participant who said local bodies representatives had no say in deciding the programmes and policies and in selection of candidates as ‘we have no identity’.


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