Sunday, 27 September 2020

Upgraded Version Of Rahul Gandhi

Updated: May 9, 2015 1:02 pm

After all, Rahul Gandhi is back with a bang. The hopeless Congress Party has now woken up to tread the path of political movements. Senior advisors of the grand old dynasty have prepared neo-strategies for the icon of the Congress Party. All eyes are eagerly waiting to see how Rahul reads the pulse of the farmers in India. Starting from the former PM Dr Manmohan Singh, former FM Chidambaram to young MP of Gwalior Jyotiraditya Scindia, they all are standing in a line to carry forward the message of Rahul Gandhi. This is really great grand old party, where the Dynasty loyalist workers-cum-leaders, despite having been educated in great universities of the world, could not learn the meaning of ‘democracy’ and ‘leadership’ in India. The citizens of Indian Republic now understand very much that among the BJP and the Congress who performs better as a ruling party and as a main opposition party. Till now, the BJP has a good track record of playing the role of the best principal opposition party. After the successful completion of regime of the last NDA government under Atal Behari Vajpayee, people discarded the BJP for ten years. Everybody remembers that even Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru had praised Atal Behari Vajpayee as the best parliamentarian and had told that one day he would become the Prime Minister of India. Vajpayee became PM of India, but what went wrong is written in history. No political analysts had ever predicted that Modi would ever be the Prime Minister of India with such a large verdict, as he was coloured as a communal, untouchable leader by ‘secular’ brigade after Gujarat ‘riots’. Now Modi as PM will complete one year on May 26, 2015. The opposition, the ‘secular’ media and the ‘secular’ leaders are silently watching Modi’s politics. After Rahul’s return, even some BJP leaders are accepting that Rahul Gandhi has taken the political centre-stage, although the Land Acquisition (Amendment) Bill, 2015, is not that anti-farmer as it has been coloured by Congress. Facts are different, but the Bill has given much mileage to the Congress.

Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi’s addresses to farmers at a rally in Delhi and in the Lok Sabha against the NDA government’s Land Acquisition (Amendment) Bill 2015 are being showered with praise in the country. The Phoenix-like rise in Rahul’s image was witnessed after nearly two-month-long sabbatical. It is worth mentioning here that the NDA government within six months of coming into office decided to amend the LARR Act, 2013. The government advised the President to promulgate an ordinance on the midnight of December 31, 2014. This raised quite a big uproar and not just the opposition parties but even eminent social activists like Anna Hazare hit the streets and this issue since then has been occupying the prime time. Against this backdrop, the Congress, which was relegated to the back burner after the general elections held last year, took this issue with both hands, which infused a new lease of fresh life in the Congress. Hence, it is refreshing to see that Rahul is active again. It took a long time of more than 10 months for him to act in a way he does now. He might be having several reasons for this new Avatar of him, if I may call it so. The old guards in the party must be bothering him. A party having such a long history would definitely have some lethargic mass around it in the form of old guards, who find it very difficult to adjust to the new political philosophy of the day, as some of the dissents heard here and there in the recent past are examples. Therefore, it seems, Rahul has got a clearance to his satisfaction, one can assume, and consequently, he has come again to become active in the party. In this perspective, one hopes this enthusiasm would continue and the party cadres co-operate for better functioning. It is all the more essential for the country, as we need an efficient and able opposition to counter the ruling party. That is the essence of democracy.

Having said that, it is worth pondering on the part of the Congress, which is now advocating the cause of farmers, as to why it could not garner the support of the farmers in the last general elections. Here are some reasons. A report in the Economic Times, dated August 30, 2013, quoted the then Minister of State for Agriculture as saying in a written reply to the Rajya Sabha that as per the estimates released by Central Statistics Office (CSO) the share of agricultural products/Agriculture and Allied Sectors in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the country was 51.9 per cent in 1950-51, which had come down to 13.7 per cent in 2012-13 at 2004-05 prices. A Planning Commission data released in 2012 showed that the share of agriculture in the GDP dropped from 26 per cent in 1998-99 to 13 per cent in 2012-13. Furthermore, a CAG report spoke of a farm loan waiver scam of Rs. 53,000 crore meant for waiver of farm loans in Maharashtra and Andhra Pradesh, reporting large scale farmer suicides in UPA regime, besides many other scams. It was also reported that 14 million jobs in agriculture and 5 million jobs in manufacture were lost during the period 2004-2005 to 2009-10. The Congress party ruled India for most part of post-Independence India. In this background, it is for Rahul not to resort only to tailor-made course on oratory skills; instead he will have to stick to a cogent, rational and convincing agenda in order to protect the interests of the farmers and the poor section of the society. Otherwise, his renewed emphasis on being a soldier of the poor, champion of loan waivers and protector of the kisan from the depredations may turn out to be just humbug and a useless drama.

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