Congress to give final shape to its Parliament strategy today


The Congress will formulate its strategy for the monsoon session of Parliament, beginning September 14, at a meeting on Tuesday.

The meeting of the party’s parliament strategy group will be chaired by Congress president Sonia Gandhi and attended by Rahul Gandhi, Ghulam Nabi Azad, Anand Sharma, AK Antony, Ahmed Patel, Jairam Ramesh, KC Venugopal, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, Gaurav Gogoi, K Suresh, Manickam Tagore and Ravneet Singh Bittu.

Sonia Gandhi is also the chairperson of the Congress Parliamentary Party (CPP).

In the meeting, the Congress will discuss the issues to be raised in both the Houses during the session, such as the border standoff with China in Ladakh and Facebook’s alleged nexus with the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the government’s handling of the Covid-19 pandemic, the economic crisis and the decline in GDP, GST compensation to states, job losses and agrarian distress. It will also seek a discussion on the PM CARES Fund.

The party will raise the issue of the sale of 32 Public Sector Undertakings and the handing over of railways and airports to private parties.

A Congress functionary said the party will talk to other like-minded opposition parties to present a united front in Parliament on all critical issues confronting the country. A meeting of the opposition parties is expected to be held later this week.

Opposition leaders are keen to work closely with each other to take on the government in Parliament. This was expressed by Trinamool Congress supremo and West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee, Shiv Sena chief and Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray and Jharkhand Mukti Morcha leader and Jharkhand chief minister Hemant Soren at a recent meeting of non-NDA chief ministers with Sonia Gandhi on JEE/NEET and GST issues.

In the meeting, the Congress will also discuss the report submitted by a group, headed by former finance minister P Chidambaram, on the party’s stand on the 11 ordinances that the government is likely to bring in the monsoon session.

This will be the first time that some of the 23 signatories to a letter to the party president seeking a complete overhaul of the organisation will come face-to-face with Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi after the Congress Working Committee (CWC) meeting on August 24.

Four of the 23 signatories who are CWC members —Azad, Sharma, Mukul Wasnik and Jitin Prasada—came under fire from other colleagues at the meeting for writing the letter.

After chairing the meeting, Sonia Gandhi is likely to leave the country for a health check-up and will not be able to attend the full monsoon session of Parliament.