Gandhi mukt (free) Congress

….Of course there will be chaos…..Blood will be shed….real
change, does not come easily and those in power never give it up easy…..And the Gandhis, you must remember, have enormous power, influence,
resources at their command….. Modi has only 31%
of the 66% who came out to vote…..This means barely a fifth of the nation
behind him….So the battle will not be easy…..

The Grand Old Party of India needs a thorough house-cleaning before the youth agree to vote for it (the vote for BJP was actually a vote for Modi as the “decider”). And the best way for this to happen is that the Gandhis decide to (voluntary) step down and arrange for a democratic vote for creation of a “privy council” which will rule with the express consent of the party workers.

Such a Gandhi-free Congress will be powered by the Muslim-Dalit vote while the BJP under Modi will be the natural choice of Forward Caste (FC) – Other Backward Caste (OBC) – Scheduled Tribe (ST) combine. Ultimately, driven by pure electoral logic, India will be ruled by OBCs, as has been the case for most of its history (however this does not mean that OBCs will be dominant everywhere).

It is difficult for us to vote for either party in present form, we would like to support (ideally) a center-left, secular organization. If the Aam Admi Party becomes a nationwide political force, a bit like an United Party of NGOs, then this would be close to such an ideal. But at the very least we would welcome a Gandhi-free Congress, which in our opinion will be able to take up its proper role as a natural ruling party (in some areas) and a loyal opposition (in other areas).

In the long run there are only two acceptable paths of change from the present, unsatisfactory, First Past The Post (FPTP) model: India may decide to switch to a two-party + presidential system (PS) following the United States. Alternatively, India can opt for a proportional representation (PR, with 5% threshold vote) as in Germany. We prefer the PR over the PS model, however both models will require (and enforce) umbrella alliances, similar to the NDA and UPA set-ups that we have now.
Manmohan Singh lost because of the Gandhis. Narendra Modi won because
of the Gandhis. Can we finally get a politics without the Gandhis

One of the first things everyone agrees upon in private and denies in
public is that the Congress party has reached such a sorry state
because of the Gandhis who currently run it. Even Congressmen now admit
to it. But as they fear the wrath of the dynasty, they avoid saying it
in the open. It remains but an unspoken verity.

Very early in her life, Indira Gandhi learnt how to grab power and
consolidate it. She did it with amazing dexterity and ease to begin with
but then, as the years went by, her insecurities made her more and more
ruthless. The Emergency brought it all out finally. In her son Sanjay
she got the perfect fall guy though. He was seen as the architect of her
fall. But anyone who knew her will tell you that the Emergency was a
natural outcome of her own true instincts.

Her son Rajiv and his wife were both schooled in politics under her
tutelage. So it’s not exactly surprising that they share the same
insecurities. Rajiv concealed it with his charm and wit but it 

came out in the open.

From the way he berated an incumbent chief minister who had come all
the way to the airport receive him, then just a party general secretary,
to being churlish when crossed by Prabhakaran, Rajiv was exactly the
kind of prime minister India so wanted and yet was so disappointed with.
You have to read Natwar Singh’s autobiography to figure how Rajiv
single handed got India into such an awful mess in Sri Lanka, and Natwar
(you must remember) was as ardent a Rajiv fan as you will get. Till
ofcourse Sonia managed to rile him.

Natwar’s book tells you as much about the Camelot years as it does
about Sonia and the fall of the Congress. It is the first stone. More
will be cast I am sure. By others.

Till now all the fault lines in the party were blamed on others.
Manmohan Singh got the brunt of it. He was for Sonia what Sanjay was to
Indira. The perfect fall guy, the man everyone came to hate. It was a
deliberate strategy to show him up as a wimp who ran away from the
battlefield. As the man who let the party down. 

Short of calling him
corrupt, a charge that few would buy into, every other insult was
directed at him through a pliant party apparatus and a submissive media
looking for someone to target in a season of endless scams where
billions were purloined. It was legerdemain of the highest order and
poor ….

Manmohan never looked as if he could preside over such an enormous

Since the media was too scared to take on the Gandhis, they chose the
safer option. They targeted Manmohan and, like a fool, he allowed
himself to be led to slaughter. From there began the rise of Narendra
Modi, the man the nation chose to throw the Gandhis out. 

Modi was
charismatic. He was seen as powerful, decisive. So the electorate
decided he could do the job the media and the Congress party had failed
to. From that choice came Modi’s real power. Not from the BJP or the
RSS. Not from Hindutva. Modi was the man, India decided, who could
rescue our politics from the grip of the Gandhis. He had an equal
reputation for ruthlessness. It was steel for steel. Modi versus the

The BJP and Congress were only observers.

Now that the battle’s over, and a hundred days too, the nation waits
with bated breath to see how Modi will take on the Gandhis. Neither side
is showing its hand. Both are playing blind. Manmohan has retreated
into oblivion. The Congress is rudderless. The Gandhis only take credit
for victory. Not responsibility for defeat, whatever the clichés they
may resort to.

But this time there’s opportunity. A real opportunity for change.
Narendra Modi may be the pretext. But the opportunity lies in taking the
party that once fought for India’s freedom and give it a spine to fight
for its own freedom. Freedom from the Gandhis.

Of course there will be chaos. Blood will be shed. Change, real
change, does not come easily and those in power never give it up easiy.
And the Gandhis, you must remember, have enormous power, influence,
resources at their command. Modi has only 31% of the vote. That is, 31%
of the 66% who came out to vote. This means barely a fifth of the nation
behind him. So the battle will not be easy. He’s smart enough to know

That’s why he is so cautious. He’s taking one step at a time. And he
has left the Gandhis alone for now. But he knows that sooner or later he
has to deal with them if he wants to consolidate his power. They can’t
be ignored. Or maybe he’s hoping that they will follow a scorched earth
policy and destroy the Congress before riding into the sunset. That
could also suit him.

But that will mean the end of a great party and the death of a real
Opposition. It will be a tragedy for Indian politics and hurt Modi as
well. For who will then deal with the lunatic fringe in his own party?
India needs the Congress. But it needs it without the Gandhis. Can that





Brown Pundits