Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi on Friday called for urgent changes in the organisation and emphasised that "extraordinary situations can be faced only in extraordinary ways" as the party is facing an unprecedented situation.
In an opening address at 'Chintan Shivir' in Udaipur, Mrs Gandhi said, "The organization is facing an unprecedented situation. We are in dire need of reforms and changes in strategy. Extraordinary situations can be faced only in extraordinary ways."
"The party has given us a lot, now it is the time to pay off the debt. We have to keep personal expectations in the interests of the organization," she said while reiterating her message of the previous Congress Working Committee.
She also asked the delegates participating in the Chintan Shivir to express their opinions openly in the party, adding that only one message should go outside, that is, "the message of strength and unity of the organisation".
Further, she accused the BJP of creating an atmosphere of hatred and division in the country while also targeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi over his silence on the required issues.
"PM Modi, who is specialized in giving speeches, maintains silence on issues he needs to address the most. The country is being set on fire of hatred, and its consequences will be very serious, beyond our imagination. The people of the country want to live with peace and harmony. But BJP keeps provoking the fire of hatred continuously," she stated.
Further attacking the Modi government, the Congress interim president said, "PM Modi's much-talked-about 'maximum governance, minimum government' slogan focuses on maintaining an atmosphere of polarization in the country, surrounding people with fear and insecurity, committing atrocities against minorities, destroying unity in diversity by dividing people."Advertisement
She also said that the Central government misuses investigative agencies to defame political opponents.
"Gandhi's killers have been glorified. Attempts are being made to defame our leaders. Jawaharlal Nehru, in particular, is being targeted," the Congress interim president said.Advertisement
Sonia Gandhi also cornered the government on the issue of unemployment and inflation saying the economy is affected by the atmosphere of hatred.
After Sonia Gandhi's speech, Congress leaders from across the country will brainstorm on various issues in a hotel in Udaipur for two days, which will be announced on the last day of Chintan Shivir.Advertisement
Ahead of the exercise on Friday, Congress leader Ajay Maken had announced that Congress will create a new department for on-ground feedback, and the rule of "One family, One ticket" would be implemented.
The Chintan Shivir is being held in the backdrop of the party's drubbing in the elections to five state assemblies held earlier this year. The party witnessed several electoral losses in the elections held in the past eight years. Congress has also seen the exit of some of its prominent faces.