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Anarchy in Congress – editorials


Following the second consecutive defeat of Congress in the elections of the Delhi assembly: it failed to win a single seat, fell to its lowest percentage of votes to just a little over 4%, and did not obtain the highest number of votes in even 1% of the booths: there is a war of words that has exploded inside the party. From former finance minister P Chidambaram celebrating the defeat of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to Sharmistha Mukherjee (leader of the Delhi Congress and daughter of former President Pranab Mukherjee) asking if Congress had outsourced the task of defeating the BJP to the parties regional; of (former head of Delhi) P C Chacko, implicitly blaming the loss of the late Sheila Dikshit to his assistant and spokesman Pawan Khera, noting that the party had never fared so badly; From the former head of the Mumbai unit, Milind Deora, praising the Aam Aadmi Party government to the former head of the Delhi unit, Ajay Maken, suggesting that Mr. Deora should leave the party, the battle is public and bitter . This extends to factionalism within other state units, with young leaders, in particular, expressing their unhappiness.

There is also a lack of coherence in policy issues with, for example, Shashi Tharoor criticizing the government for denying entry to a member of the British Parliament, and Abhishek Manu Singhvi who supports him. Party advocates may suggest that this is a sign of internal democracy. But political parties work on the basis of a degree of coherence and discipline. The dissent is expressed in the party forums. If there are complaints, the responsibility lies with the leadership. What is happening in Congress appears as anarchy.

There are two causes of this crisis. The first is the absence of an honest and introspective internal review after his loss in the elections of Lok Sabha. In his absence, the party is struggling to mount a united challenge, on a common ideological platform, against the BJP. The second is weakness and rotation in superior leadership. Sonia Gandhi remains deeply respected, but has not wanted or could not assert her authority. The fact that he has made it clear that his presidency is only an interim agreement leads to uncertainty. Rahul Gandhi’s decision to resign as president, his frequent absences and his sporadic intervention in party affairs also do not help, since there is a lack of clarity about whether he will return as president or if he has decided to limit his role to that. of a deputy. All this has raised concerns between the rank and file of the match, which does not see a roadmap for the future. The party owes it to the more than 110 million voters who trusted him again last year, as well as to Indian democracy, to act together.

Hindustan Times