Why are they leaving their home?

   By Vijay Darda | 04-03-2024

There is no greater sorrow than seeing your loved ones leaving you, worry is a distant thing!

People often ask me, when would I leave? Haven’t you jumped ship yet? I find this slightly amusing and can only reply that I have been hearing this for the past seven to eight years. I am still here. Tomorrow, God knows! I cannot comment on the future. The people then wish to know why others are leaving? This is a serious question that demands introspection, but then again, are the people who should be contemplating this indeed doing so? Probably not! This is because the current situation is akin to older times when the words of kings and emperors became law. There is simply no room for questioning!

There are talks of people being scared and moving out on account of some kind of fear. I don’t know how many have done so but I believe there are two possible explanations for their ‘departure’. One is the perception that their future here is bleak…the reasons for which they entered politics, their personal aspirations and political ambitions cannot be realised and hence they packed their bags and left. The departure of prominent leaders like Ashok Chavan from the Congress and Praful Patel from the Nationalist Congress Party (Sharad Pawar faction) should set bells ringing!

Another possible explanation that comes to mind is the feeling of despondency that creeps in, when one finds that the works that one sought to accomplish while in politics, cannot be completed. Unlike the popular notion, individuals do not join politics for pecuniary gains. There could be some who have blemished the field by their actions but mostly people join politics for the development of their region, their state and their nation. They wish to contribute in making India prosperous. They sustain themselves through hard work and seek to resolve public issues. However, if this becomes difficult, how can one work?

There should be somebody willing to listen and take action in the party, otherwise how can one progress? An indifferent leadership cannot be the answer!

Look at Ghulam Nabi Azad. A tall leader who was allowed to leave the party without a ripple! What prompted Himanta Biswa Sarma, a significant figure in the Congress party in the Northeast, to depart? Why have RPN Singh and Kripashankar Singh left?

What has led to the marginalisation of individuals like Anand Sharma, Mani Shankar Aiyar, and Sachin Pilot? Kamal Nath changed his plans after Sonia Gandhi called up and also because there was opposition in the BJP owing to his past.

Has there been any genuine attempt to comprehend the reasons behind Jyotiraditya Scindia, Jitin Prasada, and Milind Deora leaving the Congress? All of them were part of Rahul Gandhi’s inner circle. They also belonged to the same generation. Weren’t these leaders plagued by the thought that they would not be able to do anything significant here even over the next ten years? And they will also age with time. Not all are blessed so as to be young yesterday, youthful today and continue to be as energetic tomorrow too!

Sonia Gandhi has delegated all responsibility to Rahul Gandhi who is working diligently. He has further made leaders down the line responsible for the future of the party but what are these leaders doing?

If Rahul Gandhi’s ‘yatra’ made an impact and the party gained somewhere it was due to the role played by local leaders in those areas. For instance, Anumula Revanth Reddy defeated a wealthy and more powerful Chief Minister in Telangana on his own strength. Otherwise, the Congress was busy quelling in-fighting in the rank and file of the party. They lost Goa and Madhya Pradesh after winning the elections…!

Finally, after a long delay, elections were conducted for the post of the President in the Congress party. Mallikarjun Kharge is a good and respected person but his age undeniably limits his activities. There is a need for some freshness in the party if only to retain its appeal and vigour. The leadership baton has to be passed to the younger generation. This is the order of things as a fresh perspective has to be introduced…!

One wonders if there is any deliberation on the status of the Congress in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar? And on how Mamata Banerjee was treated in West Bengal or how Hooda was being treated in Haryana? Tamil Nadu has all but slipped out of the Party’s hands but BJP has also made inroads in Karnataka, a bastion of the Congress. The party has been annihilated from the birthplace of Mahatma Gandhi and Sardar Patel in Gujarat all the way to Odisha. And yes, it is a reality that people are not enamoured with the BJP but are aligning with it due to the influence of the development agenda put forth by Narendra Modi and Amit Shah. However, the Congress still seems to be oblivious to this fact!

Let’s set aside ideological differences because ideologies have now been reduced to a facade! Yes, when I see Congress spokesperson Pawan Kheda and Supriya Shrinate taking charge, I still find a glimmer of hope but even they should be afforded an opportunity to reach the Parliament. Here, internal strife and leg-pulling are seen to be on the rise in the party.

What could be more worrying and grave than a person such as Abhishek Manu Singhvi, who staunchly defends the Congress’ ideals, losing the Rajya Sabha elections! What kind of strategy did the Congress adopt? Today if Nitish Kumar has once again decided to align with the BJP, isn’t the Congress too at fault somewhere? Where is the INDIA Alliance? You have conceded defeat and in sporting terms, given a walkover to the other side. You keep saying, ‘I love India’ and they will continue to pound you on the mat! This is the truth of today!

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