Mumbai: Apparently miffed at Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan for 'skipping' a meeting convened by the city unit of Congress, its president Janardan Chandurkar on Monday said that leaders must encourage the cadre as they are the backbone of the party and help it win elections.
"Workers must be encouraged by leaders as they, and not bureaucrats, help us win elections. It is because of the party that a government is formed. In an election, it's the government and not the party which loses. Hence, it's the responsibility of those in government to empower the party workers," Chandurkar said.
He was speaking at the meeting organised by the Mumbai Congress to launch a disaster management cell wherein party workers will assist citizens in times of need, including during rainy season.
Meanwhile, talking to reporters later, Chandurkar clarified that his comments were not directed at Chavan. "I was talking in general about leaders. Chavan had to attend to urgent official work," he said.
On the disaster cell, the Congress leader said that the initiative was to bring party workers closer to the common man.
"Our workers will help people during heavy rains and other calamities. We will ensure that the ward office is at the service of the people throughout," Chandurkar said, adding that he was planning to organise training for workers by experts in the disaster management.
Chandurkar recalled that Congress has "always stood by the people" even at the cost of protesting against its own government.
"Mumbai Congress had organised a morcha, led by Murli Deora and Sunil Dutt against the party government of SB Chavan in 1987 demanding regularisation of slums till 1985," he said.