Rahul bars youngsters with criminal record from party


"We have adopted zero tolerance in cases where a candidate has a criminal record," Ashok Tanwar, president of the Youth Congress, said.
In the first case, the party has barred a Youth Congress member from contesting elections in Puducherry after he was found to be under a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) scanner, Tanwar said.
Gandhi is keen to conduct organisational elections and demoratise the Indian Youth Congress, seen by many as the future of the Congress in a country where youth constitutes 54 percent of the total population.
The polls will be held in all states and at panchayat, block, district and state levels too.
To help conduct the polls and ensure the elections are free and fair, Gandhi has roped in the Foundation for Advanced Management of Elections (FAME), an NGO headed by former chief election commissioner J.M. Lyngdoh.
"We have entered into an agreement with Rahul that no candidate with doubtful background will be allowed to contest elections,” K.J. Rao, general secretary of FAME and former Election Commission official said.
Rao said it was with this understanding that Ashok Anand, a young Congress member against whom a charge sheet was filed by the CBI, was disqualified from contesting elections in Puducherry.
Organisational elections have been completed in Punjab, Gujarat and union territory of Daman and Diu. Polls in Puducherry will be held July 27 followed by Tamil Nadu.
Gandhi is conducting talent hunt countrywide to open the doors of politics to youngsters without political lineage.  Ever since he has taken to politics, he has realised that the main reason young people shun the political arena is they feel they cannot get space in political parties unless they have godfathers - or political relatives.
"The talent hunt is a gateway for those who want to get into politics but find it difficult," said Virender Singh Rathore, national general secretary of the Youth Congress.

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