Skip to main content

Mathrubhumi : COLUMNS » AMULYA GANGULI Published: SATURDAY, OCTOBER 18, 2014

Congress in self-destruct mode
Amulya Ganguli

Perhaps the awareness about the irredeemable nature of the Congress's political fortune persuaded Prithviraj Chavan to let the cat out of the bag. By confessing, however, that he was powerless as the Maharashtra chief minister to probe the allegations of corruption against influential party members like Vilasrao Deshmukh, Sushil Kumar Shinde and Ashok Chavan, as well as a ministerial colleague, Ajit Pawar, the outgoing chief minister has drawn attention to the primary cause which is behind his party's decline.

There is little doubt that it is the deliberate turning of the blind eye towards suspected acts of corruption, which has fatally undermined the party's position. The Congress' reputation for aiding and abetting corruption first enabled Anna Hazare to whip up public sentiments against the party.

Since then, its soiled image has been exploited in full measure by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which has buttressed its case by underlining Manmohan Singh's poor record in governance.

But it wasn't only the former prime minister's seeming inefficiency resulting in a policy paralysis, which hurt his government and party but also the palpable dalliance with fraud. As much was evident when, like Chavan, Manmohan Singh confessed his helplessness to act against dishonest colleagues because, as he said, one couldn't have elections every six months.

The person whom the then prime minister probably had in mind when he made the comment was undoubtedly the telecom minister of the time, Andimuthu Raja. Nor is there any doubt at whose prodding Manmohan Singh allowed Raja to continue in office till the Supreme Court intervened and sent him to jail.

It could not have been anyone other than the Congress's all-powerful president, Sonia Gandhi, who prevailed upon Manmohan Singh to let Raja remain in office if only because any step against him would have made the DMK withdraw support, leading to the government's fall.

Sonia Gandhi must have been also behind Prithviraj Chavan's inability to act against Vilasrao Deshmukh and others lest the party be 'decimated', as he said.

In both the cases, a prime minister and a chief minister known for their personal integrity had to bow to unethical dictates from the powers-that-be and pretend to be oblivious of all the wrong-doing that was perpetrated under them.

It is another matter that neither Manmohan Singh nor Chavan had the guts to tell those higher up in the party echelons that they could not wink at fraud and behave as if all was well. Had they done so, the fate of the Congress might have been different.

After all, it was someone like V.P. Singh, whose refusal to close his eyes to scams led to him being hailed as Mr Clean and crowned as prime minister. Since then, there has been hardly anyone in the Congress who has had the honesty to admit that the party's sullied image is letting it down although former finance minister P. Chidambaram did identify ethical and governance 'deficits' as the reasons for the downhill slide.

Chavan is the first one to say that he could not 'shed' his tainted party colleagues because 'if I had sent them to jail, it would have hit the party organization'. However, the irony is that the party has been 'hit' any way because the belief that it is unwilling to act against the guilty is electorally damaging.

The Congress paid the price, first, in the Tamil Nadu assembly elections in 2011 when its defeat along with that of its partner, the DMK, showed that the voters were not ready to forgive and forget.

Since then, the party has lost a series of state assembly elections, notably in Goa, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan, and now it is on the verge of defeat in Maharashtra and Haryana.

There can be little doubt that the Congress's corrupt image is primarily responsible for the party's predicament. Strangely, its leadership appears blind to the writing on the wall. It still apparently believes that its socialistic pretensions, as is evident from Rahul Gandhi's criticism of Narendra Modi's pro-business policies, will help it cross the electoral Rubicon.

The deafening silence from the leaders, which has greeted Chavan's spilling of the beans, is a tell-tale sign of what has gone wrong with the Congress. A party which was so quick to act against Shashi Tharoor for his praise of Modi is acting deaf and dumb when a serious charge against its functioning has been made by a senior functionary.

It is not, however, difficult to understand the reason for its coyness. Like the decision to persist with Raja, the reluctance to act against Vilasrao Deshmukh and others could not have been taken without concurrence from the very top, viz., Sonia Gandhi.

Yet, the party has seemingly convinced itself that it cannot survive without the Nehru-Gandhi family. Arguably, it has an idealized image of the family dating back to the times of Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi when their names and appearances made the voters flock to the Congress's banner. This is no longer the case.
Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Swami Udit Chaithanya :

Swami Udit Chaithanya was born and brought up in Kerala, the beautiful green state in the southern west part of India. After graduating in Law, Swamiji joined Sandeepani Sadhanalaya in Bombay. Finishing his post graduation in Vedanta, he became a part of the Chinmaya mission and served the organisation for 3 years. He was inspired by Swami Sevananda who was the secretary of Acharya Vinoba Bhave when he discovered a new dimension in Sevanandaji's unique interpretations of India's ancient spiritual texts.

Ever since, Swamiji has been teaching the messages of Srimad Bhagavatham, Bhagavad Gita, Narayaneeyam and the other Holy Scriptures to thousands of people in India and abroad.

Swamiji has dedicated his life to the mission of spreading the divine message and to transform the society and the individual through heightened spiritual awareness.

Swami Udit Chaitanya is the founder of Bhagavatham village, a spiritual retreat home and Swamiji  has formed “Bhagavatham Village Trust” to pro…

Poojya Swami Bhoomananda Tirthaji’s Main Ashram : "Narayanashrama Tapovanam"

The word 'Ashram' (in Sanskrit) stands for an abode of learning or education. It is a pity that even after 50 years of independence; many of us are prone to associate constricted religiosity with the word and dispose of the institutions under such name as engaged in some sectarian practices. Of course, it is only a corollary of the widespread ignorance with which we often stamp our great Bharatiya (Indian) culture as 'Hindu Religion'.

More than the theoretical knowledge of different subjects, education in our country always meant man-making -- purification, fortification and transformation of personality in the holy association of the Teacher, so that the student would become fit to course victoriously through the vicissitudes of life and attain fulfillment.

And Ashrams were the institutions imparting such education. The most important factor underlying the legendary greatness of ancient Bharat was these honored seats of learning - the Ashrams - where the saintly Teacher…


Rediscover Bharatham!!! Our Father of Nation Mahatma's dream was "Ramarajya in BAharatham". The word secularism may oppose the term used 'Ramarajyam', the term means a land of TRUTH AND VALUES. The Upanishadic culture is the culture of our country. The training given to the citizens of Bharatham to live this Sanatana Dharma is called Hinduism. Bharatham is a Spiritual country. BHA means Knowledge and ratham is one who lives, hence Bharatham means a country where people are living in knowledge. Modernisation, Globalisation , our political parties, our Rulers, our system, our education, parents, new generation, media, our dress code, blind imitation of western countries and many more causes of this. Science and technology is boon for good people, where demonic citizens take advantage and exploit these benefits into criminal activities, we had experience since Atom was mis-used, now the demonic activities is continuing.
Rulers keep open their eyes and ears open and …