Congress’ Solilada Sardara represents established order


Finally, the Nehru-Gandhi clan has ceded area to a non-Gandhi.  However it’s fairly clear that the brand new celebration chief Kharge will look over his shoulder and all the time be on tenterhooks.

In victory, Mallikarjun Kharge has proved but once more that he actually is ‘solilada sardara’: a warrior who is aware of no defeat.

His observe report: Contested 12 elections, dropping just one.  This time round not solely did he trounce Shashi Tharoor however rode to victory with a powerful vote share of over 84 %.

The suspense has ended as has the will they gained’t they query vis-a-vis the Gandhis.

Finally, the Nehru-Gandhi clan did cede area to a non-Gandhi and made method for what Congressmen think about could be a refurbished Congress.

But have the Gandhis actually given up their maintain? Will the brand new incumbent, on this case the 80-year-old Mallikarjun Kharge, really work independently? Or will he be remote-controlled by the powers that be? Does Congress scion Rahul Gandhi’s assertion that his future function can be determined by the newly-elected President maintain? Or is it mere optics?

While there are not any prizes for guessing this one, it’s fairly clear that the brand new Chief will look over his shoulder and all the time be on tenterhooks. That aside, regardless of the Gandhi clan publicly stating that they’d comply with a hands-off coverage, previous expertise has it that their writ will run. Remember Dr Manmohan Singh and even Narasimha Rao’s tenures as heads of Governments?

For the uninitiated, Kharge defeated contestant Shashi Tharoor by a margin of over 7,000 votes. Victory aside, his feat is that he’s the primary non-Gandhi to imagine workplace as Congress chief after 24 lengthy years.

Judging from a slender prism, Kharge’s alternative sends a constructive sign to the Dalit group which is miffed with the Congress as a result of they had been denied what they deserved.

Kharge’s appointment could placate them notably within the poll-bound state of Karnataka, which is Kharge’s house.

Kharge is the second Dalit chief, after Jagjivan Ram, to be the Congress President.

Apart from consolidating the Dalit vote base, Kharge may additionally act as a bridge between the faction-ridden state unit.

A high contender for the workplace of Chief Minister greater than as soon as, Kharge misplaced out to SM Krishna in 1999 and later to Dharam Narayan Singh.

When his supporters requested him to stake a declare, he declared that he would by no means go towards the Gandhis.

In 2013 too, he was a mute spectator to Siddaramaiah being sworn in as Chief Minister.

Therefore to say that the Gandhis handpicked Kharge due to his loyalty could be lacking the wooden for the timber. Quite clearly he was chosen as a result of he’s a “safe” wager and would toe the dotted line. In all chance, he could be powerless even whereas being on the helm.

But Kharge is just one a part of the story. The different is Shashi Tharoor who even whereas congratulating Kharge on his victory, did allege irregularities within the elections together with “voter fraud” because the Tharoor camp selected to explain the electoral course of.

Even whereas the outcomes had been a foregone conclusion and Kharge’s victory was a given, the important thing was the variety of votes Tharoor would rating.

Backed by Gandhis, Kharge was unofficially the official candidate. So it remained to be seen whether or not he could be solidly backed by the rank and file or whether or not his victory could be merely beauty. And it’s right here that the victory-margin comes into play.

This just isn’t a couple of numbers-game in any respect however one which displays the extent of discontent within the Party.

Tharoor, it’s well-known, was a part of the group, in style as G-23, who had demanded a stronger management and inner reforms inside the Party. In a departure from the norm, 23 senior leaders really wrote to Sonia Gandhi demanding a whole overhaul of the Party.

Therefore when Tharoor threw his hat within the ring, it was largely believed that his candidature represents the discontent inside the Party. Therefore, if Congressmen had been actually searching for a change they’d root for Tharoor.

This even if Tharoor neither brings in years of expertise on the desk or is aware of the nitty gritty of operating an unlimited and complicated organisation such because the Congress.

Unlike Kharge, he isn’t in sync with floor actuality. He is elite and has hundreds of thousands of followers on social media: a form of disqualification for the rank and file. An uneventful Congress employee, notably from the Hindi heartland, could be hesitant to method him. Born within the UK, by Tharoor’s personal admission, he speaks “adequate Hindi”.

Yet his sufficient Hindi might not be adequate to woo the commonplace Congress employee. Also his assertion that he would deliver a recent set of concepts to the desk didn’t minimize ice.

But that is much less about Tharoor and extra in regards to the questions his defeat throws up.

Is the dissidence for actual? Or is it confined to a handful, formidable leaders who need a share within the power-pie? Were it not so, wouldn’t he, even in defeat, have secured extra votes?

The dismal 1000 plus one thing rely in his kitty is nothing to beam about. But Tharoor supporters are smug as a result of the 66-year previous fought to the end.

Going by share, Tharoor bagged 11.4 % votes which his supporters see as “impressive”.

They dig into History and have a tendency to match the vote rely to the celebration elections in 1997 when Pawar took on Sitaram Kesri. Unlike Tharoor, Pawar didn’t even contact the 1000 mark. In 2000, when Jitendra Prasada took on Sonia Gandhi, he couldn’t cross a double digit, securing solely 94 towards Sonia Gandhi’s 7000 plus votes.

But these had been completely different occasions, and comparisons, due to this fact, are irrelevant.

Back in these days, the Congress was a drive to reckon with and dissidence was maybe symbolic. A Jitendra Prasada or a Pawar may neither dent the Party nor problem the Gandhis.

However, 2022 is neither 1997 nor 2000. The Congress fortunes have dipped and the decline is a continuing. There is a large-scale exodus with  loyalists like Jyotiraditya Scindia, Kapil Sibal,  Ghulam Nabi Azad and others  snapping  ties with the Party they swore by. Discontent and disillusionment has, maybe, peaked.

Therefore when Tharoor determined to contest, it was felt that he would get sufficient help and even when he had been to lose, the margin could be slender.

But his not being anyplace near Kharge’s landslide victory signalled that the a lot hyped dissidence was maybe magnified. As was the transfer for the Gandhis to surrender their maintain on the grand previous Party.

Otherwise, how does one clarify the large help that Kharge bought as a Gandhi nominee?  Were the necessity to substitute the Gandhis as robust because the dissidents needed us to imagine, then step one on this path could be to defeat Kharge, who was unofficially the official candidate. Or not less than assist Tharoor to get an honest variety of votes and shine even in defeat?

So what’s the message of this election?

Simply put, it’s that the dissidence that the disgruntled G-23 are speaking about is a notion and never a actuality. Were it actual, then Tharoor would have been the place Kharge is and vice versa. In different phrases, he could be Party President and Kharge out within the chilly, as Tharoor now’s.




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