Amid the shouts of EVM tampering from the opposition camp which was decimated by the BJP in the recently concluded UP elections, Rahul Gandhi baffled one and all by saying that the performance of Congress was just a “little down”. The INC in an alliance with SP contested on 105 seats and won a paltry 7 seats.
While such a shambolic result would open the doors for a complete revamp of the party and Rahul Gandhi understanding the gravity of the problem, this statement from Rahul Gandhi describing the UP result as “a little down” will give rise to the growing murmurs of discontent in the Congress.
Rahul Gandhi seemingly bereft of ground reality went on to blame the BJP for polarising the UP campaign.
The likes of Digvijaya Singh ,Manishankar Aiyyar etc all still refuse to blame Rahul Gandhi for the defeat and are vehemently defending him. The question arises then who should be blamed for the party’s poor performance?
Rahul was the face of the party’s UP campaign and even an alliance with SP couldn’t save the party’s blushes. From winning over 300 seats to being reduced to single digits in UP speaks volumes about the leadership of Rahul Gandhi. Uttar Pradesh is the home of the Gandhi dynasty and if the Gandhis can’t ensure a victory in their home state then how can they be trusted for the 2019 General elections?
The performance of INC in Amethi ,the parliamentary constituency of Rahul Gandhi was shocking to say the least where the party where the party lost all the 4 seats, 3 of them were won by the BJP. Perhaps it might be a case that Rahul Gandhi was expecting such a result because when elections are managed not by leaders but by hired, so-called strategists and professionals(read:Prashant Kishor), the results are a foregone conclusion. Infact in 2012 UP elections, the INC won 27 seats which was prior to the “Modi Wave”.
By that logic the INC winning 7 seats in 2017 during a “Modi Wave” can be termed as “ a little down” by the standards of Rahul Gandhi.
The lack of seriousness of INC in India’s politically most important and populous state was for all to see. From “27 saal UP behaal” and naming Sheila Dikshit as it’s CM candidate before the alliance with the SP to “UP ko yeh saath pasand hai” and “UP ke Ladke” after the alliance, one can argue that the credibility of the party took a big hit after it’s meek surrender to the Samajwadi Party.
Just what was Rahul Gandhi thinking? Did he really expect the people to vote for him just because he is from Uttar Pradesh? Which century does Rahul Gandhi thinks do we live in? If the results are anything to go by Rahul would even lose the status of Member of Parliament if he sticks with Amethi in 2019 Lok Sabha Elections which might be a good thing for the party as it would save them from further embarrassment. While BJP had Keshav Prasad Maurya as it’s chief of Uttar Pradesh, INC had Raj Babbar, a former Samajwadi at it’s helm and surprisingly decided to parachute Sheila Dikshit from Delhi. With Raj Babbar and Sheila Dikshit in it’s ranks, the party had expected to attract the youth of UP.
There is a message for Rahul from Punjab, Goa and Manipur. The local leaders have to be given a free hand as they understand the pulse better. Take for instance the Karnataka scenario. The Congress has lost a veteran, S M Krishna. He is definitely a factor to rope in the Vokkaliga votes which can be a decider in any Karnataka election. Looking at the Congress today, it seems pretty clear that the party is reluctant to shed it’s dynasty politics.
Clamours for Priyanka Gandhi are already growing after every election who did play a significant part in the party’s campaign in Uttar Pradesh. Infact it is believed that it was Priyanka Gandhi who stitched up the alliance with the SP which was close to breaking at one point. Priyanka Gandhi is equally culpable for the UP result as Rahul Gandhi.
The INC which is in a constant state of introspection since BJP announced Narendra Modi as it’s PM candidate will certainly face another “ little down” in 2019 if it did not shed it’s dynasty tag and head for a major revamp.