June 24
07:37 2019

“Sometimes just explaining your predicament is all it takes to see a way out of it.”

In the ongoing ICC Cricket World CUP, during the match between West Indies and South Africa, three of South African Fans were noticed in a celebratory trundle holding the SA national flag high chanting “We’re on the board! We’re on the board! We’re on the board!”. And it was after their national team was managed to share the points due to the wash out and a feeling that at last their team was on the points Table. Their team shared a point which was better than what it had managed in their three other matches — hence the flag-waving fans’ happiness. But there was a glazed resignation in their eyes, and it wasn’t just about the beer they had consumed. But due to the concern their team would struggle to win their remaining six games on the bounce to retain a better than outside chance of reaching the semi-finals. And whether South Africa, in their current predicament of low confidence, could reel off five victories would be a conjecture of the time.

Let us analogue the current funk of South African team to the current predicament of Indian National Congress, the Grand Old Political(GoP) party of India.

The Grand Old Party, of course, improved its tally of seats and vote percentage which is better than what it salvaged in 2014 elections.

Despite that, like the SA fans, there is a gloom in the eyes and a glazed resignation in the minds of both the leaders and cadres of the Congress party, as, the party almost went into the elections as the Principal contender sensing that it would exploit the perceived fall in the graph of popularity of Narendra Modi.

But they were shocked into accepting the painful truth after the massive mandate to Narendra Modi( read not to the BJP as the Party) that they were not as good contenders as they thought they were.

Unlike the 2014 election campaign, the 2019 election narrative was different.

Keeping aside the real issues of the country such as livelihood, farmer distress, unemployment, demonetization etc., the ruling party used diversion tactics and made the election all about “national security”.

The Congress instead of concentrating on its shortcomings and to play its own strength played away from its strengths and discovered new weaknesses of getting dictated by the perception set up by the BJP.

The Congress should ponder why it took the Balakot episode, with debatable enduring returns, to bring Hindutva back to centre stage.

Rahul Gandhi himself, while falling into the perceptional trap set by the BJP, deepened Hindu consciousness and identity by going on a temple run, flaunting his Hindu identity, and was projecting as a devout follower of Lord Shiva and a sacred thread-wearing Brahmin.

Consequently, the Congress has fallen short of its self-adjusted reality.

It is time it took a hard look at itself.

Nonetheless, you cannot call this the worst situation the Congress has ever faced, yet this certainly an extremely shaky moment for the party.

The message of the results, which the Congress should perceive from, is that the Indian voters do not believe Rahul Gandhi can do a David – at least not when he is up against Modi, the Goliath.

PV Narasimha Rao had once said that “there was a Congress beyond family”. These were prophetic words. Certain lackeys failed to understand the truth behind these words.

Today Congress is in crisis for which Gandhi leadership is responsible.

Rahul Gandhi appeared to have read the signal and submitted his resignation and is adamant about stepping down.

But it has been two weeks since then, and the Congress is still unsure where it stands.

So much could change about the Congress in what promises to be a dramatic next few weeks following Rahul’s stand on stepping down..

Soon the leadership might look back on its present predicament as an important time of reflection and coming to terms with the way things are.

Because only then can work on making things the way they should be.

Congress leadership, soon, have to write off the drubbing in 2019 as a failure in terms of winning a elections, but in years to come it could see the election results as the image where it finally looked in the mirror.

The leadership needs to do that, and there are times it may not like what it saw in the mirror.

This is that time for Congress, the Grand Old Party of Indian politics. Of course, it isn’t pretty.

The gloom is indeed gathering, and it will gather for a while yet.

But, like those beer-blessed SA fans of ICC world Cup, wandering uncertainly around the ground, flag aloft, eyes glazed over, the Congress leadership also, needs to get through the hangover before the sun will shine again.

For that it should have a hard look at its present image in the Mirror.

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