Rahul Gandhi faces criticisms within the party
Senior leaders question his abilities
Is the Congress splitting?
Sonia Gandhi’s silence and inaction are no solutions.
Neither Sonia Gandhi nor Rahul Gandhi are willing to meet visitors,nor talk to people or travelling in the states.How do they hope to revive the party’s fortunes?
Time and tide don’t wait for anyone.Unless you act and do things,you might be swept away by the tide of the times.
Please understand the Zeitgeist of the times.There is much work to be done by the Congress party.
The national mood is mixed.Hopes and anxieties.Please exploit the situation.It is politics!
After the Lok Sabha debatable the Congress party is at a standstill.There is no movement forward from what we saw last at the AICC headquarters where appears Sonia Gandhi along with son,Rahul Gandhi.To attend the CWC meeting.The duo offered to resign and as expected the sycophants packed body with such luminaries like Fotedar and R.K.Dhawan,the long-time family retailers loudly protesting and making the withdrawal of the offer to resign a big show.
Who doesn’t know the CWC is an unelected body for quite along time,as long as more than 20 years!
So,what sort of in-depth discussion one could expect from that deliberation It was a mere show,a deliberate move to keep the status qua.Yes,the status qua continues to this day.When Mr.Narendra Modi has done so much in the last 100 days,here we have the leading party,the Congress which was routed in such a massive manner is not doing anything.
Rather in a surprising way Sonia Gandhi and Rahul are carrying on their jobs in a casual manner.Sonia Gandhi’s residential phones are not even attended to,as we found out in a recent visit to Delhi and with our interaction with the other Congress leaders.Sonia is not even receiving visitors.The air around Sonia is one of deliberate petulance and disinterest.She has no social life whatever from what we found out nor has she any great political commitment becoming of a senior leader.This is a pity and we have to say what we saw in Delhi and what we gathered from our talks and meetings with other Congress leader.Bot the at the AICC headquarters as well as in private residences.We meet the senior leader Motilal Vohra,a sprightly 56 and active and alert in mind and spirits.In fact,he gave us the look and confidence and composure of a typical old world Congress leader who exuded much optimism and confidence.He believes and he told us so that the Congress would bounce back as we have to do only the role of a responsible Opposition for the next five years.He cited the old times when India Gandhi was in the wilderness and he in fact narrated to us how Indira Gandhi went on an elephant to the remote Bihar village when some massacres were perpetrated on the Dalits there.
Of course,we queried him much about the new changed times.Of course,Mr.Vohra’s optimism in the current wholesale rout of the party seemed misplaced but the old man didn’t flag for a moment.
In fact,that gave us some optimism too in the sense that we can do some work and yet retrieve the party’s fortunes.
We also met Mr.A.K.Antony,another senior leader and discussed with him his intended report seeking the cause for the defeat.Of course,Mr.Antony is a gentlemen politician and he was also very circumspect in his answers to our pointed questions.
Only after we met and talked with Mr.Antony we could figure out that here too he was constrained by the mandate,yes,actually he used the word,we could surmise that he was asked or accustomed to give a sanitised report that would protect Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi.That is what we read in the newspapers as to what sort of work Mr.Antony was entrusted with what he actually did.
Now,we see,after few days there is trouble brewing in the party.
Apart from revolts in the states,in Maharashtra and Haryana ,not to speak of other states like even W.Bengal where Congress MLAs and senior heavyweight politicians are moving over to the BJP or as in W.Bengal to the Trinamool Congress.
The state of the Congress party in the states is very bad and it needs a much more in-depth elaborate discussion and debate.
Even this aspect of the party disintegration is not attended to.
In fact,it is the cosy existence of the leaders that is now threatened.It is the role of Rahul Gandhi that seems troubling the party leadership.
First,the senior general secretary Janardhan Diwedi who is the CEO of the AICC who is uncomfortable.He should be.Otherwise,his own future,his own position would become untenable.Mr.Diwedi has come out with some indirect criticism of Rahul Gandhi’s leadership style that is a bit cranky and unpredictable.First Mr.Gandhi is inaccessible.How does this attitude towards visitors is justified?It seems that Mrs.Sonia Gandhi seems to have not much hold on her son who has his own whims and fancies.He still retains his old aides,fine.But how do they see things in the near future.For their own good and for the good of the party’s own future?
Mr.Diwedi floated the role for Priyanka Gandhi.There was no takers.
To bring the daughter in the place of the son itself looked a bit unwise.No mother would discard her only son and that too with such big stakes.He was groomed,as we can see now,as a minor prince and a future king.
It is also the fault of leaders like Mr.Antony who is his earlier avatars even opposed Sanjay Gandhi once.For that error he paid a price.We can also recall Mr.Antony was expelled and he was out of the Congress for some time.
So,as a seasoned leader and also knowing the party’s dynastic tendencies Mr.Anthony too has to tread carefully.
Now,another senior leader,Mr.Digvijya Singh also has lately come out with criticisms of the younger Gandhi.
Mr.Digvijya Singh could also be a future contender for the ultimate prize of the PM’s job.In politics you cant say anything definitely.In some situations he might be a key player.He comes from Madhya Pradesh ,a large state with a lot of players like Kamalnath and also others are there.
So,the seniors at the AICC are too many and they are all waiting and watching as to the next step,next developments.
Now comes the younger brigade,the ones defeated and ones who are there for the simple reason of Rahul Gandhi providing them some protection still.
Now,who are the defenders of Mr.Gandhi?
They are the ones hand-picked by Rahul.Rahul has knack of picking the wrong hands!That is his undoing.That has proved costly in the 2014 elections.Now the party is facing a round of state elections.In Maharashtra,Haryana and Jharkhand.The elections comes soon after the 100 days celebrations of the BJP government.Already Sonia and Rahul had announced they wont go for the election campaign.That itself was a dampener.
Now,a pre-election survey indicated that the Congress is to come very badly.In Haryana where the Congress was once very powerful,why the state government always came to the rescue of the party in Delhi,in terms of money and infrastructure whenever a party show had to be conducted.Now,the party is in shambles in the state.There had been high profile exits.The pre-election survey indicates that the Congress would come third after the BJP and the INLD.In Maharashtra,a critical state,the aprty along with the NCP might end up behind the BJP-Shiv Sena combine ,the Congress ending with no more than 70 seats.In Jharkhand the Congress is seeking alliance with the JMM,RJD and the JD(U). Yet the in-house assessment is that the BJP has the advantage.
Now,both Sonia and Rahul are very hesitant that they should not expose themselves once more by coming out badly with their public image of losers.
Yet,there is no large-scale consultations with the party seniors who,at the moment seem to be divided.Why,even a serious threat to the unity of the party cant be ruled out.
If strongmen from states like Haryana and why,even in Maharashtra,leader like Nirupama Rane ,are not in a good mood.They could play dirty politics too if in case the rivals offer attractive packages.
The Congress under Sonia-Rahul style of functioning had encouraged so much sycophancy and sheer irresponsible behaviour by going for very weak and supplicant types,these Sonia choices often proved betrayers as well.
You don’t really cultivate genuine loyalty by promoting time-servers and favour seekers.
See the number of the heavyweight cabinet minister.Where are they?
Why are they not engage themselves in strategy and ideology?
These ones around Rahul now are lightweights.They lost the elections and they have nowhere else to go.Otherwise,they would have migrated to green pastures.
The party defectors whom Sonia patronised and who enjoyed power and perks as minister are nowhere to be seen.
We can name them but we refrain owing to some decency.
In fact,there is already deep tensions within the existing ranks,the high and the low,at the very AICC headquarters itself.
The ones invisible are the greatest threat in my assessment.
Then,there are the material factors.Money,funds and perks and the jobs and the bungalows.
How can you build a political organisations with only the mercenaries around you?
Rahul Gandhi’s political future remains a question mark.
It is no more a settled matter.The dynasty cant survive in the present times.More so ,given Rahul Gandhi’s reluctance to shoulder greater responsibility.
The young man must show himself out.He must be seen ad talking.He does neither.Many have commented on Rahul’s inaccessibility.We needn’t comment further.
As for the mother she is much more reluctant.One doesn’t know what is in her mind.
She seems at the moment talking about inconsequential things like price rise and inflation.
These are no matter for the ordinary people.
We have to concentrate on the more basic and fundamental questions.
A party like Congress must look at history,ideology,the emerging realities,the youth psychology,jobs and gender sensitivity etc..