Tons of papers by thousands of popular writers in India & abroad have been written while giving advice to the Gandhis on how to revive the party. A few like Sagarika Ghosh suggested forming a new party called the“Swatantra Congress Party” without ideological baggage. Mary Tully, a renowned writer has suggested to shed darbari culture & centralization of power. In my observation, nothing of such sorts needs to be followed by the Gandhis to run the party.
The BJP is not a party with a difference in the matter of politics. Not a leaf can budge without Narendra Modi and Amit Shah
s permission in the BJP. Jagat Prakash Nadda, a current working President of the BJP political strategy has failed partially to win a clear cut majority in Haryana and Maharashtra for the BJP despite marooned media and economic resources. Before the 2014 general elections, Amit Shah and Modi proclaimed to make it “Congress Mukt Bharat” but the various state as well Haryana and Maharashtra election results have shown that the BJP is no more a political party that can be trusted fully anymore. People of India now know that the BJP and its leaders are making false promises. Most of the promises made in the BJP manifestos are unfulfilled. People also know that the NDA under Modis incompetence has no financial capacity to carry out those promises. The poor farmers have already sent a clear & loud message to the BJP that no more lies. New India under the Modi government is reeling under economic debt.
We cannot blame completely the Gandhis for not winning a full majority in various elections. Rahul Gandhi in his capacity worked hard before the 2019 elections but the minds of the people of India were confused by the marooned media houses which run stories full of lies against Nehru and Gandhis 24×7. New young voters do not read the history of the congress party. Neither has the time to read because nowadays, the majority of youngsters are found engaged on social media. The news and views against Nehru and Gandhis are uploaded by the BJP media department 24×7 thereby young voters get confused.
The Congress party under the leadership of Sonia Gandhi chose leaders like Navjot Singh Sidhu who quit Congress and joined the BJP. There is a long list of such political opportunists in every political party who have no patience. Quick political power, social status, wealth creation is the mantra of the majority of the young political leaders such as Sidhu. When young leaders come to the congress party they dare to defy the senior leaders as such in the case of Amarinder Singh, Chief Minister of Punjab. I completely disagree with Mark Tully (in his article, ‘The Congress must bid farewell to the Gandhis” published in HT when he says that, “Amarinder Singh was the only Congress chief Minister of a major state to resist the BJP. Let me remind Mark Tully that it is not only Amarinder Singh’s political success that can be applauded for grabbing Punjab state from the greedy paws of the Akali-BJP alliance. There are two important reasons behind his political success; One is the people of the state had made up mind against the corrupt Badal and His son government, other was the infighting within the alliance. The two terms of the Badal family government under the nose of the BJP looted the state of Punjab with both hands. The people of Punjab was tolerating the corruption but when Badal family and his cronies started suppressing socially, politically the leader of the opposition parties then people got fed up with the Badal family and the BJP. Dalits girls were raped under the nose of the Badal family and no concrete action was taken against the Sikh upper-caste rapists. In many rape cases, the victims could not register FIR because of political and social patronage of the Badal family to the rapists. At the same time, the RSS workers in the state of Punjab got immense strength and political patronage to torch the members of the marginalized communities. For example, a Dalit youth belonging to Ambedkar Sena was shot by the Shiv Sena and Hindu Suraksha Samiti. This news jolted the state of Punjab mainly due to favoritism on behalf of the Badal family to these Hindu outfits. More 35 percent Dalits in the state of Punjab felt betrayed by the Badal Family when it took several days to register FIR against the shooters. The Akali-BJP alliance was rejected by the people of Punjab because of such several factors.
India`s politics, like in the developed nations of the world, has changed. The role of regional political parties has got strength with the emergence of regional leaders who know better local issues and are presumed to be in a better position to influence the voters. The Congress party did not indulge in horse-trading like the BJP. The winning GOA was easily handed over to the BJP by the Congress party because the congress party has no culture of horse-trading.
The majority of the regional party leader is saleable as a result the BJP gets a chance to buy & form the government. On the other hand, the BJP has CBI, ED and other law enforcing agencies which can bend any powerful politician to the BJP knees. In the case of Haryana, the BJP knows that the Chautala family is notorious for corruption. Had Dushyant Chautala, the JJP chief shook hands with the congress, he and his clan members would have faced CBI, ED by now? Let us evaluate the position of Shiv Sena today? The Shiv-Sena leaders know it very well that if they keep on pressuring the BJP for Dy Chief Minister post they are going to face CBI, ED in the coming days. The result will be the fragmentation of the Shiv Sena. Uddhav Thackeray, the chief of Shiv Sena shall not be able to prove the source of income that he had spent during the state election. People, in general, do not know what kind of business the Uddhav Thackeray family runs. And what is the source of their income? From where they got huge money to spend on the state election. Of course, The BJP has all the necessary information to book the leaders of Shiv Sena. So, anytime, the BJP can launch an inquiry to screw the bolt of Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray.
In the past, the political success of the BJP can be attributed due to corrupt regional leaders who are supposed to be in politics only to make wealth not to serve the country. If we go 50years back, there were not so many regional political parties and regional leaders it is, therefore, the congress did not face any competition to retain power in the center and states. Now the scenario has changed. The BJP is a two men party that is worse than the dynasty.
In my opinion, Congress not required to change the name of the party; congress needs not bid farewell to the Gandhis. The need is to inform the people of India about the anti-poor, anti- farmers, anti-Dalits, anti-Muslims, anti-Christians, anti-OBCs policies of the Modi government. After Haryana and Maharashtra results, the dent has been made by Congress. From two states results in favor of Congress partially, God has made up mind to help the Congress in one way or the other Prof Vivek Kumar, teaching sociology at the Center for the study of social systems, school of Social Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University once said, ‘People cannot be changed, they change by themselves’
Dr. Rahul Kumar is an independent researcher and senior media columnist. His research & writing interest extends to macro social, economic, political & international affairs. The views expressed by the author in this article are personal and do not necessarily reflect the official policy of the paper.