I write this whereas convalescing from the coronavirus an infection. House quarantine offers you substantial time for introspection and makes issues crystal clear. The final time my colleague and pal Salman Soz and I wrote an article in TOI (Tips on how to Rejuvenate Congress, March 3, 2020) it created fairly a flutter inside my occasion. In accordance with somebody pretty senior, we had “crossed the Rubicon” because it had been, in boldly asking for an organisational transformation, revisiting ideological moorings, and checking out the albatross around the Grand Outdated Social gathering’s neck, the longer term political management of Congress. The article acquired quite a lot of accolades from leaders inside the occasion for biting the bullet. However I remained acutely upset that only a few had been keen to publicly endorse its contents (that are largely animatedly agreed upon in personal confabulations). And therein lies the issue for the Congress. Therefore, this text.
Just a few days after the article appeared, a noteworthy colleague of mine in our casual group descended on me like a ton of bricks. He was deeply perturbed at my effrontery in publicly advising Congress on what the longer term roadmap and technique ought to be. I used to be sarcastically informed that I ought to be grateful that the occasion permitted airing of my views in a number one newspaper when it could have been extra apposite for me to share my views on resurrecting Congress in “inside platforms”. Certainly, if there had been a discussion board for frank change of concepts and counter-ideas held with a defining objective to get the Congress again on monitor, why would one threat unwarranted disaffection from the senior management? The occasion has been on the receiving finish of dreadful negativity for thus lengthy that its lack of ability to set the agenda and seize the narrative is making a severe harm to its credibility. The occasion deserves higher. It’s a false declare that there exists a strong inside democratic course of that listens to particular person voices, and extra importantly, is constantly centered on occasion renewal, political technique, tactical warfare, management growth and resuscitation beginning on the grassroots, the erstwhile USP of the Congress. The much-celebrated A Okay Antony report submitted in 2014 has hardly been seen; most of us have solely heard about its allegedly redacted observations when it has been mentioned on TV channels. Frankly, that’s ludicrous.
If a publicly listed firm has even one dangerous quarter in company earnings, it’s subjected to a brutal examination from analysts, with nobody spared, significantly the CEO and the board. Extra importantly, the corporate itself redraws its short-term revival plans, medium-term methods and long-term targets to synchronise with enterprise potential and market expectations. The Congress, however, has demonstrated extraordinary lassitude, and its lackadaisical angle in direction of its personal political obsolescence is baffling, to say the least (and this regardless of a whopping defeat in two Lok Sabha elections and several other reverses in states). I want to name a spade a spade right here and a shovel: there was no severe effort to get the occasion up and operating with any sense of urgency. There are various within the occasion who can’t comprehend this perceptible listlessness. For somebody like me, for example, completely wedded to Gandhian philosophy and Nehruvian outlook that defines the Congress, it’s dismaying to see its painful disintegration. It doesn’t make sense, particularly given the truth that the present regime seems clueless in even elementary governance ever because the pandemic affected not simply hapless people, however poor migrants and every day wage labour, moreover jeopardising the financial system. There are arduous days forward, however barring sporadic outbursts of some constructive initiatives, the Congress has not created an alternate white paper on governance for India. That is the time for it to take action, as an alternative of waging a social media hashtag twister. The occasion has excellent expertise however the majority of my colleagues appear to choose self-preservation to the extra daunting problem of bringing about change. Change that’s wanted and is crucial. They do a disservice to an ideal political motion. Their silence magnifies the occasion’s woes. Issues want options, they will’t be wished away.
Just a few days in the past, Congressmen fondly remembered their distinguished statesman-leader Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru on his loss of life anniversary. I want to remind them that Nehru as soon as wrote a scathing advisory to himself beneath a pseudonym recommending restraint on centralisation of energy. As a substitute of superficial manifestations yearly on Could 27, Congress must emulate Nehru’s greatness. Charity, in spite of everything, begins at house.
Jha is the nationwide spokesperson of the Congress occasion. The views are his personal
DISCLAIMER : Views expressed above are the writer’s personal.