Lathika Subhash, a senior member of the Congress party and chief of the women wing, has resigned from the party because she was not given the ticket for the 2021 assembly election in Kerala. “Congress had miserably failed to understand the feeling of Mahila Congress and its workers. As a woman, I feel this is a planned neglect against us,” wrote Subhash in a letter to Rahul Gandhi.
“None of the Mahila Congress representatives had got the ticket to contest in the election,” Subhash added.
According to a report by Times Now, Subhash has decided to contest as an independent because the Congress party has refused to give her the ticket. The resignation by the senior leader of the Congress party shows factionalism, lack of faith in the leadership, and lack of discipline in the Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee.
Kerala Mahila Congress chief Lathika Subhash gets her head tonsured in front of the party office in Thiruvananthapuram in protest after being denied the party ticket for Assembly elections.
"I am not joining any party but I'll resign from my post," she says. pic.twitter.com/FWme31IEdU
— ANI (@ANI) March 14, 2021
A few days ago, PC Chacko, among the senior-most and most popular leaders of the Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC), left the Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee and said that the party lacks democracy. Moreover, former Congress general secretary Vijayan Thomas has also left the party to join the BJP.
Thomas said that many other senior leaders are not happy with factionalism and grouping in the party, and would leave very soon. “I was tolerating for a long time. You know what is happening in Congress, they are not knowing what is happening to them actually. They don’t know how to work it out,” he said.
“Who is left there now? And even in the states, who is looking after the states properly? So totally, now the hope is in Kerala. There also you can see what is going to happen. See, I am the starting maybe. So there will be a lot of senior leaders leaving very soon. The preparations are going on. They are just waiting until what is happening until the election,” Thomas added, as he talked about the crisis Congress faces in Kerala.
The factionalism and lack of leadership in the state committee would further marginalise the party in the state in the 2021 assembly election. In the 2016 assembly election, Congress won only 21 seats in the assembly of 140. Indian Union Muslims League, which used to be a marginal player in the state for decades, emerged as the second-largest party in the United Democratic Front camp with 19 seats. Now the state unit of Kerala is completely under the shadow of the IUML and its Islamist leaders, therefore, many Christian leaders are leaving the party to join BJP.
Congress used to draw its support base from Christians and Muslims of the state but over the years Muslims shifted to IMUL and Christians to Kerala Congress (M) and whatever Christian leaders are left in the party are turning to the BJP.
The party is being abandoned by the Christian community of Kerala which, along with Muslims, was a major vote bank for the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF). The rising dominance of Muslims in Congress and UDF together forced the Christians to incline more towards the LDF and the BJP.
The factionalism in the party and the lack of leadership pushed it to the margins. Given the current status of the party, it seems the 2021 assembly election would be like a bad dream coming true for the Congress party.