Analysis

The BJP Drama & the upcoming Rahul vs Modi Show

In the last one year Congress party has not allowed any of its promising leaders to get prominence; except to tout Rahul Gandhi as the future leader of the party after Sonia Gandhi. Congress appointed Rahul as the party's VP. But despite Rahul being given much leadership opportunity by Congress in the polls in several states in the last couple of years, he has not succeeded in any of them. His image continues to be lackluster. Just being young is not enough. If one looks for Rahul's accomplishments in the last five years, the slate is nearly blank. All he has done is parrot the Congress party plank. But no one can see his contribution to that plank.

In contrast despite his terrible human rights record, Modi has been chief minister of Gujarat for over 10 years, and can show that he has contributed to several success stories in Gujarat. Thus while the minorities continue to be fearful of Modi's leadership and hate it, the majority community looks at the bad side of Modi and his success stories and compares it to the Congress misrule comprising of massive corruption and lawlessness, and the absence of a capable leader in Congress.

Manmohan Singh is more than 80 years old; Sonia can not function as PM due to a variety of reasons. Also Sonia has no record of success in any field, other than peoples' sympathies with her due to the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi. But after ten years time is running out. Rahul has not shown competence at any level other than trying to play populist politics. In his many speeches Rahul has not talked of any specific development plans or future plans except populist and feel-good sentiments.

Continuing in this manner and indirectly projecting Rahul Gandhi as the standard bearer leader of Congress party will cause a direct comparison between Rahul and Modi. In that comparison majority of people can not find enough potential in Rahul Gandhi as the leader. And at this time no martyrdom sentiments are attached to Rahul. Thus a lot of voters may conclude that Congress party is continuing to dither, and its standrdbearer is not looking very qualified or strong as a leader.

Even if all minority Muslims and Christians vote for Congress candidates for parliament (not very likely), the electoral demographics, and the substantial strength of other secular parties are such that Congress led by Rahul will not win against BJP led by Modi. In a divided parliament, BJP may be able to cobble up a ruling majority, and Modi can become Prime Minister.

The current Advani vs Modi drama in BJP may turn out to be a clever drama that may project Advani as the BJP's Mahapurush who anoints the younger Modi as Prime Minister. In fact the two of them may play the dual power center role that Sonia Gandhi and Manmohan Singh have played successfully in the last ten years. So Modi can become Prime Minister and unleash a rule that will marginalize Muslim and Christian minorities further from their already pretty low perch in India.

It is indeed unfortunate that Congress party that has several competent leaders, has continued to have strong faith in the never ending attraction of the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty to the voters. It appears though that now voters are getting tired of the long running re-runs of the dynasty show. They are searching for at least some substance behind the dynasty heir's images.

By playing this mindless dynasty politics game endlessly, Congress party is also putting at risk the secular structure of the nation's polity and an equitable future for the religious and ethnic minorities in the nation.

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