For the last few months, Congress is trying to capitalise on the ongoing farmers’ protests. From disruptions in parliament to Rahul Gandhi’s speech on farm laws during the discussion on budget, Congress is making all attempts to ensure that it gets the lost political mileage through the protests. However, if the results of the Gujarat Municipal elections are any indication, Rahul Gandhi’s attempt to capitalise on the protests against the farm laws is only harming the grand old party.
BJP swept the Gujarat Municipal election, winning 483 out of 576 seats, which takes its success ratio to around 90 per cent. Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara, Rajkot, Jamnagar, and Bhavnagar, the six municipal bodies that went into the polls, voted overwhelmingly for the party.
Despite Rahul’s efforts, Congress came up with one of the lowest tallies in recent decades with only 55 seats out of 576, which is even less than 10 per cent, around similar to its tally in Lok Sabha Elections of 2014 and 2019. From the election results, it is very much evident that only 10 per cent of the electorates are willing to bank on the Congress party.
Smaller parties like Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and AIMIM are eating up the support base of the Congress. In the Gujarat Municipal Elections, AAP fielded 470 candidates and 27 of them emerged victoriously. In Surat Municipal Corporation, Congress led by Rahul Gandhi lost the opposition space to the Kejriwal-led party. Even the Owaisi-led AIMIM, which is seeking a pan-national presence, contested the municipal elections in Gujarat for the first time and won seven seats in Ahemdabad’s Muslim-dominated localities.
For the last few months, Congress is trying to build political momentum and relaunch Rahul Gandhi on the back of the ongoing farmers’ protests, with the help of farm leaders like Rakesh Tikait.
Earlier Rahul Gandhi chose to speak after the Prime Minister’s speech in both the houses of Parliament. He chose not to speak on Motion of Thanks to the President’s Address because usually, the Prime Minister speaks in the last so that she/he can reply to all the questions/concerns raised by the Members of Parliament. So, had Rahul spoken on the Motion of Thanks to the President’s address, Prime Minister Modi would have given a befitting reply, that would have exposed his lies and hypocrisies.
So Rahul Gandhi spoke on the General Discussion of the Union budget and, instead of raising questions on the budget, spoke on farm laws (this is also a violation of Lok Sabha debate guidelines which says that the matter on which discussion has already happened can not be raised latter). He tried to hide this violation and said, “I will speak only on farm bills in the discussion budget in protest.”
Even on the farm laws, he could not speak for more than ten minutes because he has little expertise on any topic as well as he lacks interest in politics and public policy. However, after the results of the Gujarat local body elections, Rahul Gandhi must realise that his stupidity is getting exposed due to rants against the farm laws, which will further damage his political image.