Panic Button For Rahul
The results of 2012 Assembly Elections in the five states put the Congress party in a dilemma and those of three northern states UP, Punjab and Uttrakhand have really shown the door .These results have laid down the foundation for its ouster from the Centre in Lok Sabha elections due in 2014.If the Congress fails to choose conscience candidates for the position of Vice president and President this year,the rift in the UPA and with other supporting parties i.e. SP and BSP would widen leading to mid term poll. The coming days are like walking a tight rope for a minor slip may shatter the dreams of the Party Prince for his promotion as a ruler.
The victory or defeat in the battle is chosen long before it is actually experienced. The defeat was already chosen by the party ,much before the elections, particularly in Uttar Pradesh, when it continued making mistakes one followed by other. The party reserved Rahul Gandhi to UP by calling the UP Assembly elections as his Mission 2012. It should have been one of his tasks but it was projected as if he were a racing horse competing with SP state Unit President Akhilesh Yadav and the BSP Chief Mayawati. This marginalized him from national stature to the State level. Today his political status is being compared with Akhilesh Yadav as on Google Search engine Yadav is being searched more than him.
No doubt there was a great craze of Rahul Gandhi amongst people to see his glimpses and to touch him but this is the second time in UP that they did not vote for his party mainly either because of the malfunctioning of the party or due to the tainted image of candidates selected for Vidhan Sabha. What added fuel to the fire was that more than 150 candidates were brought to the fold of the party in the nick of time of elections and given the tickets. This created fear in the rank and file for political career leading to mass sabotage and parting away of many leaders who were loyal for decades. The newly coming candidates were rich and many of them had criminal background also. The news that Congress party top brass have sold out the tickets to the rich and criminals got spread like wildfire through the Congressmen themselves.
The reports of party observers were managed by senior leaders in favour of their pocket men.Thus the High Command was getting all reports doctored by the Party second line leadership. Another problem with Rahul Gandhi was that it was impossible to talk to him separately for any district or state level leaders. They could not give him correct picture in the presence of his lieutenants. The party got suffered great setback in Uttar Pradesh, the largest state importantly to decide the fate of the central government.
The worst happened in Bundelkand which was the dream area of Rahul. He visited Bundelkhand many times and was instrumental in getting the Bundelkhand package. The party gave the tickets to those who were involved from half a dozen to about three dozen criminal cases and stood fourth position in all the seats in Jhansi which used to be the centre point of his visits. Jhansi is represented by the Union Minister of State, Pradeep Jain. This parliamentary constituency has suffered a setback earlier also when it lost two assembly bye elections. Rahul Gandhi charisma failed the second time in Uttar Pradesh. Canvassing of Rahul and his family members gone in vain because of selection of the wrong candidates.
Immediate steps are required to save the party from further damage to the party. The old, loyal, honest workers who are either sitting at home or left the party finding themselves disillusioned before the newcomers of criminal backgrounds have to be taken back in the fold. The bold decisions are required with drastic change as his grandmother Indira Gandhi used to take. It is good that Sonia Gandhi has found the fault and accepted openly the mistakes of selection of wrong candidates by the selection committee. Whether Rahul Gandhi would understand those who were at the helm of affairs and are responsible for this debacle and dare the action against the so-called stalwarts.
Steps like Kamraj Plan might be underway to send off self centered leaders to go for some social work or be asked to set the house of their own state in order rather than attributing every happening to the political opponents and their parawings. The result of these elections is an awakening call for the Rahul Gandhi ‘s aspirations to become the Prime Minister or else he will be lost in oblivion in 2014 if continued with the present team and the image of the party is not improved.
By Dr Vijay Khaira