Cong gets ready for media war with workshop

The media war between the Congress and the BJP could intensify further with the Sonia Gandhi-led party holding a one-day national workshop for its select 300 activists on Thursday to foil the saffron party’s design.

Significantly, the camp is being held at a time when the Vishva Hindu Parishad is preparing the ground for the BJP in Uttar Pradesh ahead of the Lok Sabha polls by deciding to take out a “yatra” from Ayodhya defying a ban by the state government.
The Congress’ national workshop on social media will be held at Jawahar Bhavan in New Delhi.
The party has shortlisted 300 activists who are tech-savvy. They will be trained on Twitter, Facebook and other interactive Internet sites.
“Each state has shortlisted five activists-cum-spokespersons for the workshop which will be addressed by professionals, experts and the Union minister Manish Tewari and Shashi Tharoor,” sources said.
Asked whether Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi will be attending the workshop on the social media, they said it is yet to be finalised.
The BJP, especially its prime ministerial aspirant Mr Narendra Modi, has been using this media against the Congress and its leaders with a calculation that this will help it in winning the electoral battle. Mr Modi had tried to project him as a better PM candidate than anyone in his own BJP on his Independence Day speech. Though he had criticised Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the Congress, his entire focus was on how he is a better candidate than any one else for the top post.
Meanwhile, the AICC will also have a cell on digital media under MP Deepender Hooda, which will be part of the communication department headed by party general secretary Ajay Maken.
Though the digital penetration in India is limited compared to the West, the social media is being seen as an effective tool to reach out to the young ahead of the Lok Sabha elections. The social media becomes more important when 65 per cent of the population of the country is below 35.
There is also talk that the Congress will soon hold training sessions for “IT cells” to be formed in the states, localising the party’s microblogging response even further.

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