As the family-owned political pasture called the Congress is drying up, all the aged cattle are grieving that ‘they have been neglected.’ While many of them have already quit the party in search of greener pastures, those that have completely lost their relevance and continue to remain in the Congress have revolted complaining that they are not being allowed to graze in the pasture that is now left of the party. There is no other comparison better than this to portray the revolt of the seniors in the Congress. Having built their political careers and having reaped political dividends using the name of the Gandhi family, and without making any contribution to the growth of the party, these seniors have turned around and raised a banner of revolt against the Gandhi family, and are now trying to break the party.

If the contribution of these seniors who reaped maximum benefits when the Congress was in power is analyzed, it would inadvertently throw up the reasons for the present state of the Congress. Staying in the Congress but allowing the Sangh Parivar to expand and thrive across the country, these seniors made sure that young leaders did not grow. At the same time, they did not allow new ideas to germinate in the party. The Congress is on the verge of sinking mainly because of these seniors who somehow kept the high command pleased and nipped any new leadership from blossoming within the party. How does it then matter who holds the reigns of a ship that is sinking under the weight of the seniors? In the present situation, the position of the Congress president is almost like the Cross to bear and obviously, no one is willing to have it. Rahul Gandhi who had it knows it well. Sonia Gandhi has agreed to continue as an interim President for six months. But what will happen to the Congress after six months? Does any leader other than Rahul Gandhi have the strength to take the Congress forward?

In the present form, the Gandhi family has lost its charisma. Gone are the days when votes could be fetched simply by being Indira Gandhi’s grandchildren. The tiny voice of Rahul Gandhi is lost in the tsunami of lies peddled by Narendra Modi. The Congress party cannot survive if it is not completely restructured and overhauled. But, if such an attempt is made, the party will once again get divided. There is a possibility that a few seniors might walk out of the party. It is then prudent to get onto a floating raft than to become the owner of a sinking ship. If Rahul Gandhi is really keen on giving life to the party, it would be better for him to choose a floating raft. This means that everything should start from the scratch. But it does not appear that Rahul Gandhi has the moral authority to take on this onerous task. 

In the present circumstances, the biggest problem before the Congress is not that of leadership but its lack of clarity over its political stance and the resulting confusion. The Congress party is confused whether it should become the old Congress and fight the BJP or wear the Hindutva garb and face the BJP. Leaders in the Congress that the RSS had dropped into the party were running the agenda of soft Hindutva. These leaders had also indirectly cooperated in the growth and expansion of the RSS in the country when the Congress was in power for nearly 70 years. Today, ‘Hindutva Forces’ have partially succeeded in taking the country’s politics under their control. Looking at this success of the ‘Hindutva Forces’, the Congress is considering how to become a part of this Hindutva rather than thinking of the means of strengthening the secular forces that have weakened. It does not appear that the Congress is even interested in introspecting about how Constitutional values got eroded and how the RSS grew when the party was in power for nearly 70 years.  

In the first week of August when work on the Ram Mandir began, the Congress was not embarrassed in identifying itself with this movement and proclaimed that Rajiv Gandhi too had a role in the construction of the Ram Mandir. By doing this, it completely owned up the responsibility for the demolition of Babri Masjid. The Congress also tried hard rather unsuccessfully to show that the BJP was not responsible for the construction of Ram Mandir but that it was being built according to the Supreme order and also stop the BJP from reaping political dividends from the construction of Ram Mandir. 

Several Constitutional experts have already expressed the view that the Supreme Court’s order about the construction of Ram Mandir is ridden with contradictions. Stating that the demolition of the Babri Masjid is a criminal offence, the Supreme Court at the same time allowed the construction of the temple. The court forgot that a temple could be constructed on the same spot only because the Babri Masjid was demolished. It has been alleged widely that political compulsions were responsible for the Supreme Court’s order. Congress leaders are very much aware of this. Despite this, if the Congress identified with the Ram Mandir, it means that the Congress is mentally aligning itself with the BJP. 

Similarly, it is the Congress that raised a hue and cry over the Rafale deal. But the moment the Rafale aircraft landed in India, it conceded that the Congress was responsible for Rafale’s entry into India. It is true that the Rafale agreement took place during the UPA regime. But then, Hindustan Aeronautic Limited (HAL) was part of the deal. By handing that part of the deal over to Reliance, the BJP turned it into a mega scandal. Though Rafale has entered India, it has not got a clean chit in this scandal. The Congress could have used this opportunity to bring BJP to its knees but is now trying to take credit for bringing Rafale aircraft to India in the first place.  

The Congress is casting its eyes on Hindutva after losing its political base that comprised Dalits, Backward Classes, and Minorities that the party had used as its strength. Unless the Congress gets clarity over its ideology and political stance, whoever takes on the party mantle will not be able to save the party. The country is finding it difficult to tolerate one BJP. Does it need another BJP in the garb of the Congress? 

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Mangaluru:Former Congress MLA Mohiuddin Bava on Wednesday claimed he received a call from an unknown person objecting to his participation in the ongoing Navaratri celebrations at a temple here.

Bava, who had represented from Mangaluru North segment, said he has lodged a police complaint about it.

The Congress leader said he visited the Gurupura Ambika Annapoorneshwari temple at Bajpe here and took part in the rituals following an invite by its priest.

Later, he got a call from a man, who identified himself as Anil from Mumbai and raised objections to his visit, saying It's not Nehru period, it's a Modi period, Bava alleged.

"A Muslim should not go to the temple, a beef eater and Muslim should not visit temple," the caller had told him, he claimed, adding the conversation was recorded by him.

Bava said he told the caller that he went to the temple on invitation and added he had not differentiated between communities in his political life.