(The Asian Independent)
As the world doing every effort to overcome the Corona virus, in India our political leaders never fail to surprise us that for them ‘power’ is everything. For the ruling party, the best game, in which they seems to be unquestioned champion is ‘how to dislodge’ the opposition governments in the state.
Sachin Pilot is out. Prior to him Jyotiraditya Scindia went to the BJP. There are many who are actually waiting to be sacked or looking for some signal to get out of the party. Most of them do not have mass base but they have good linkages with the ‘liberals’ who wish them to ‘lead’ the congress.
Rajasthan crisis has brought some important factors out now. It has exposed the basic facet of Congress Party that the basic characteristic of the savarna congress is the same as BJP and that they are ready to leave the party once they realise there is no ‘future’. In politics, you are with a party not because it is not in power but because the ideology and fight for people’s right.
Delhi’s ‘liberal’ media is now competing in attacking the Gandhi’s below the belt. They have been told to do so in the ‘greater’ interest to show that they can criticise Gandhis. Ofcourse, they don’t have spine to criticise the ruling party and the top leaders in the same breath and same way as they do others. Most of them are actually waiting for an interview from the PM or HM but unfortunately both are not willing to give them any ‘bhav’. Somewhere, I like Narendra Modi’s idea of looking down upon in deep contempt to these pen pushers who are not more than PR agency of the ruling party. So, a political leader will not give much bhav to headline writers.
It is not surprising that in the past 10 years, a lobby in the ‘liberal’ circles have been very fond of Sachin Pilot, Scindia, Shashi Tharoor, Manish Tiwari, Milind Deora, Jitin Prasad, Sanjay Jha and many more, Most of them cant win elections on their own and except for Pilot and Scindia who have family legacies. They are presented in such a way as if they have been taken to so much heights as if Congress will doom with out them or will not remain ‘liberal’. Most of them are actually ‘economic right’ and have no difference of opinion with BJP on major policy issues. Almost all of them hate to speak on social justice and remained silent on major issues confronting us. They were with Congress as they enjoyed patronage and power and now they have lost patience with the party as they feel there is no chance for the Congress party to return to power in near future. Hence, they started looking for greener pasture. Sachin or Scindia, both know well that they will not have the same say in the BJP as they used to have in Congress.
Liberal as well as Sanghi media want Gandhis to leave Congress. If they had the opportunity, they will in fact ask Gandhi’s to leave India so that the ruling party can enjoy without any fear. The job of the media is to be watchful of government and if there is anything undemocratic then stand with people’s right. Have these champions stood with people. Instead of doing that, they jump and compete with the PR agents to denigrating and humiliating the Gandhis.
I have never been a fan of Indira Gandhi or Rajiv Gandhi’s politics and I can say firmly Congress is paying a price of their politics of drifting towards Hindutva. Congress attempted to appease the same reactionary forces who dont vote to them have been exposed. The party could not become a natural party of the SC-ST-OBC-minorities despite huge opportunity for it but it seems as Rahul Gandhi was moving towards bringing these sections into the party, the status-quoist lobby foiled every effort that he genuinely made. In return, this lobby converted him into a Pappu as everything that he tried was failed by the coterie close to Sonia Gandhi. Ofcourse, it is a surprise as why Congress leadership, its legal cell or karykaratas were not ready to defend Nehru as well as Rahul and Sonia who faced the worst form of organised vilification online.
I am not here judging whether Ashok Gahlot is greater or Sachin Pilot. Definitely, Ashok Gahlot does not attract the ‘English speaking’ Delhi media like Sachin Pilot. It is the same who wished Priyanka Gandhi to lead but since the mysticism around Gandhi family now has been completely demolished by the opponents so none is speaking about her. If you read the old columns or reports of these ‘liberals’ between 2004 to 2013, they have written reams of paper on how Priyanka look like Indira Gandhi and how she is the ‘future’ of the Congress party. Ashok Gahlot and the old generation of the Congress leadership may not be radical but committed to the party. The younger generation of the political families actually remain economic right and attempting to acquire power without much efforts. It is not that the older generation leaders are useless or worthless but there is a fact that India is not yet ready to accept the younger generation leaders. Every party is suffering from this. Tejasvi Yadav, Akhilesh Yadav too face the crisis with in their parties.
We don’t know what will happen in Rajasthan. It is sad sad day but in except for the perception in the middle classes, nothing much will happen. Pilots core constituency rarely voted to Congress party even during the last election. If Congress has to survive, it has to give opportunity to younger generation of the SC-ST-OBCs-minorities in the party, define party’s policies categorically on their issues and stop converting party the B team of Hindutva . The party need to act and communicate. In democracy we need diverse political parties. Even if Congress party’s space is shrinking, it can still play the pivotal role in uniting all the like minded forces all over the country. Congress need to stitch state alliances right now and work for a long term coalition. Thinking everything during the election time will not produce result. The party should restructure now and there are many whose heart is still in the BJP and it is time they should be shown the door. The basic problem of the Congress party is its ideological bankruptcy. There are many parties who may not be strong at the moment but committed to their ideology and none can finish them. Congress need to define what it is and challenge BJP ideologically and only then it will be able to sustain and give an alternative to BJP. The party must realise that new India want decisions to made quickly and not be waited for long to allow things to happen on their own. Congress must categorically state its policy frame work such as secularism, democracy, institutions, education, land reforms, Dalits,, adivasis, OBCs and minorities.
As a person who is dedicated to India’s diversity and democracy, I don’t wish death of any party. I want to see diverse political parties flourish in India and build a long term alliance on policies and programmes and only then we will see a credible challenge to the ruling dispensation.
Vidya Bhushan Rawat
July 14th, 2020