Sunday, May 4, 2014

The Rahul Gandhi conundrum

In the elections of 2014, the grand old party seems to have put all its weight behind it's young leader Rahul Gandhi, the scion of the Gandhi family. But, looking at his track record and his experience it looks like the gamble maybe a big one. Most of the political experts put Congress at just over a 100 or even less seats. In such a scenario is it a good decision to let someone as inexperienced as Rahul Gandhi out in the battle with some other big names?

Now, people might say that Rahul Gandhi has an experience of ten years as an MP and he has done some good work in the youth Congress. But, according to me, here are some things that make him inexperienced.

  1.  He didn't take up any ministry during the 10 years of the UPA rule. If not in the first, he should have taken up something in the second stint of UPA. It just doesn't fall in place if he hopes to be the PM in the first shot.
  2. His performance in the parliament has been very lack luster. As per news reports, he has not asked a single question, made a statement etc. Being a big leader he should have asked some questions in the parliament, where it matters the most. The occasional press conference where he rips apart the government is not enough.
  3. He was the star campaigner in the UP elections in the 2012 elections. Yet the Congress ended up being distant 4th in the elections. Well, no one expected him to win the elections for the Congress in UP, but surely they should have got more seats, given the scale of the campaign. He never looked like he was going to stay in the state and work. Maybe, if he was projected as the probable CM, the Congress would have won more seats.
  4. Unlike most leaders, he has not climbed up from the grass roots; he is going from top to the bottom. Now, we have many leaders like that, but for someone aspiring to be the PM, this doesn't sound very right.

That said, I do believe that he is honest, sincere and good at heart. Whatever he says in the media, he comes off as honest and true to it. There is no hidden intent in his manner. But then again, sometimes he comes off as too na├»ve. That makes me wonder, was he forced to join politics? Maybe he wanted a different career for himself, maybe he didn’t get to choose one.

Finally, I have a few suggestions of mine to him, so that he comes back stronger in the forthcoming elections, for the better of our democracy.
  1.  Read some books about India; understand the history, geography and the dynamics of the country.
  2. Venture out of the shells of Delhi; visit the villages, towns in the country to learn about them; not for the sake of the camera and publicity.
  3. Rebuild the congress party. The workers of the party seem to be in disarray. If he wants to lead then he has to assert himself and then build the party. Elections are won by the party workers who work with the people. Only the top leaders can’t achieve much.
  4. Accept the mistakes of his party and then learn from them.

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