By Vijay Darda | 20-03-2017
If the Congress fails to manage itself even now, then the day is not far when Narendra Modi’s dream of ‘Congress free India’ will come true!
It is worth noting that the Congress has the youngest leadership in the form of Rahul Gandhi but the youth of this country is relying on 66-year-old Narendra Modi and is voting for him. This is certainly the most important question for the Congress. We will try to find out the answer to this question. But first of all, look at some statistics that explain the miserable condition of Congress. We all know that in the 2014 elections, Narendra Modi came from regional politics and entered national politics like a hurricane and swept the political spectrum. At the time of his arrival, the Bharatiya Janata Party was ruling the country’s over 24 per cent of the population in 7 states. The Congress held power over 13 states, but in 3 years the situation completely reversed.
After the 2017 Assembly elections, the BJP has a coalition government in 14 states and it is ruling over 56 per cent of the population. Congress has been reduced to only 6 states. In Bihar, it is just a minor coalition partner of the ruling party. Now look at some more data. The Congress which was once considered the symbol of freedom of India and used to be the only party in India whose existence was from north to south and from east to west and was in every village and town, the same Congress has been out of power in Tamil Nadu for the last 50 years, for 40 years in West Bengal, 28 years in Uttar Pradesh, 27 years in Bihar, 22 years in Gujarat, 17 years in Odisha and 14 years each in Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. In West Bengal, after Siddhartha Shankar Ray, the power slipped out of Congress’ hands, and then it never got it back. The last chief minister of the Congress in Tamil Nadu was Bhaktavatsalam in 1967. Now even the eastern states are also going out of the hands of the Congress.
The Congress is the party which developed the thinking about how to save lives of farmers, labourers, poor, dalits and neglected people. It is clearly a secular party. Why, therefore, did the Congress fall on evil days? There was a time when its leaders worked to unite the country and it was considered a matter of pride to be its member. Then what caused this steep downfall? There is no harm in accepting that the Bharatiya Janata Party has strengthened itself and attracted people towards its ideology, but the truth is that the Congress has weakened itself so that the BJP did not have to face resistance. In a way, the Congress gave the BJP an open field. On one hand BJP was strengthening its cadre and on the other the Congress cadre was fading out. While the BJP was strengthening its underprivileged organisations, the Congress had left the Seva Dal, Youth Congress, NSUI and Mahila Congress to the winds. The truth is that these organisations of Congress are almost dead. There is no plan or goal to revive them.
It was ironic that factionalism in the party reached the peak. Sycophants became the rulers and in the states such leaders were born who have no rapport with the common man. I believe that leader should be like Indira Gandhi, Nitish Kumar, Arvind Kejriwal and Mamata Banerjee, who are always available to the public. Today the leaders of Congress are not available to the common man. If you go to the states and look at the Congress leaders, then you will understand what their level is? The Congress sometimes becomes a victim of confusion. The Congress felt that the demonetisation will compel the people to oust Narendra Modi. In this delusion, it got the support of Akhilesh Yadav in Uttar Pradesh. Result? In 2012, the Congress had 28 seats, which was reduced to 7 in 2017. Should the reasons for such confusion not be reviewed?
I believe that the attitude of the Congress leaders should also be reviewed. I congratulate Sonia Gandhi that she saved the Congress in the worst days. After that, Congress had been in power for 10 years. Many schemes were implemented but their credit did not go to Congress. Now the BJP is pushing those plans forward and is claiming the credit. Had the Congress leaders wished they could have told the people what the Congress government was doing, but they were only trying to settle scores with each other. They kept sniping at their own people. Amidst the allegations of corruption, unemployment and dictatorship, the power was lost. But was it really corruption? They were not scams but it can be said that they were the decisions that were taken according to the immediate circumstances. In those cases, Congressmen did not spare their own party men. On the other side, you see the BJP. Such a big scam like ‘Vyapam’ came to light, but did BJP allow any of its leaders to be trapped? In fact, the BJP party men protect their fellows while Congressmen settle the scores with the people of their own party.
Congress president Sonia Gandhi and vice president Rahul Gandhi are working very hard but the sluggishness of the other leaders is proving fatal for the Congress. In Goa, Congress emerged as the single largest party. It needed support of only 4 MLAs for majority, while the BJP had to muster support of 8 MLAs. The same was the case in Manipur. In order to assume power, Congress needed support of only 3 MLAs while BJP had to get the support of 10 MLAs.
As soon as the results were declared in Goa, the BJP took immediate action while the Congress only waited for the governor to invite the party to form government. Power slipped out of hand! I am really amused when Congressmen say that BJP used money to come to power. Indeed, the Congress has the last chance to set its own house in order. If the Congress fails to manage itself even now, then the day is not far when Narendra Modi’s dream of ‘Congress free India’ will come true!
Before I conclude…
I met a girl named Shirin Tabassum on Thursday. She does not have hands, just a little stump of the side near the shoulder. She does not even have a foot but overcoming these physical weaknesses she has completed her graduation and is now preparing for the UPSC examination to become an IAS officer. She looks full of confidence. My eyes suddenly fell on her arms, on which she had drawn ‘mehndi’. It is called courage and passion! I leaned forward and I bowed to her. We all start to puff and pant when faced with a little bit of trouble but the confidence that I saw in her was unmatched. Given her courage, she has been awarded Vidarbha-level Lokmat Sakhi Award in the bravery category. Shirin is actually a motivation for all those who are struggling with difficulties. My salutations to Shirin Tabassum’s courage!
When Narendra Modi took over power at the Centre in 2014, the BJP was in power only in seven states and Congress in 13 states. Now 14 states have BJP governments and the Congress has been reduced to six states. If this continues then there is the chance of Narendra Modi’s dream of ‘Congress free India’ coming true! This kind of weakened Opposition is fatal for democracy.