Why Rahul is failing?
Because he has yet to show his administrative mettle.
Bihar results should come as an eye opener for the Congress in the Hindi heartland as their public mascots are failing to attract votes. Perhaps they need to re-strategise their winning formulas if they wish to break the two-decade old jinx and win the largest, but the most backward state, Uttar Pradesh from where their revival in the Northern belt could start.
The alibi that the Congress is trying to extricate itself from the cesspool of coalition politics is not credible as people suspect them of exploiting the CBI probe tool to keep the troublesome allies like Mayawati, Lalu Prasad Yadav — even Mulayam Singh Yadav in check. Yes the party has to start from scratch !
How? Perhaps by convincing the electorate that the Congress would return to the so call Indira’s slogan of ‘Roti, Kapda and Makan’ with no communal, political or caste considerations derailing it at any cost. This could mean taking tough stand against both Hindu and Muslim fundamentalists without fearing any political backlash from either of the two communities.
Is Congress ready for that?
The prospects don’t look very bright but for the very reason that finally the development plank is back in the poll arena. The electorates in recent assembly polls in Northern states have pushed caste and communal considerations aside to vote for development. Even Ayodhya verdict couldn’t help Lalu as predicted by many as the Muslims opted for Nitish’s development to Lalu’s communal card.
UP is crying for development. Successive governments led by almost every party from the BJP to the SP and the BSP in the last two decades have not delivered. Not that the Congress regimes pre 1990 were any better. But whatever development was made in the state was during that regime– people remember the days of Vir Bahadur Singh and Narain Dutt Tiwari.
Can Rahul be Bihar’s Nitish? Speculations are already there that UP will be the launch pad for Rahul’s beginning as an administrator.
It’s another matter that Congress has a major credibility issue, bogged down as it is with scams coupled with the charge of indecisions and inaction. The recent 2G scam has punctured the hype created by Obama’s visit.
The question that comes to mind is why is Rahul failing. People like him, but they don’t vote for him. His yatras get applause, not votes. They clap when he talks about cleansing the political system, they love it when he appeals the youth to join politics, they like to emulate him when he dumps security concerns and walks and talks like a commoner.
But when it comes to polls, they don’t vote for him. Bihar is an example.
So are the two November by-polls in UP – in Lakhimpur Khiri and Etah, where people preferred upcoming parties like the Peace Party floated by a medical professional to national parties like the Congress. Though Mulayam Singh Yadav won both the seats, the runner up were little known political groups.
To me it appears, the top-heavy Congress doesn’t have a machinery, the infrastructure to convert crowds into votes.
Secondly, its credibility in the northern belt is in question- people neither trust its intent nor its winnability.
Thirdly, which perhaps is the most important, they want Rahul to showcase his competence by translating his much-hyped vision into practice. Mere speeches or a commoner’s conduct would not work as a magic wand when people want action, that too swift ones.
In other words power comes with responsibility.