Why Rahul Gandhi should go: Congress netas should accept his resignation instead of selfishly clinging

After a crushing defeat, Rahul Gandhi has resigned but loyalists refuse to let him go. Given the state of the party and what Rahul Gandhi himself must be going through, this is the height of selfishness.

 |  3-minute read |   28-05-2019
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After the Congress party’s complete debacle in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, all eyes were on Rahul Gandhi who had led the party's charge against Narendra Modi's BJP.

The party was whitewashed in the General Elections 2019, getting only 55 seats.

On May 23, Rahul Gandhi held a press conference and said: “I take complete responsibility for the party’s loss.”

Days after the defeat, Rahul tendered his resignation as the party president — but members of the Congress Working Committee (CWC) rejected it.

The saga hasn't ended there. Reports suggest that Rahul is adamant on quitting as Congress chief but all those occupying top spots in the party, as well as his own family, have apparently been beseeching him to think and re-think his resignation. As of now, this still stands unaccepted, and there are flurries of Congress netas lined up to try and meet and persuade Rahul Gandhi to change his decision.

But why are they putting such pressure on Rahul?

People in the Congress need to accept reality. If anything, this election should have made them realise that India now wants to see a non-Gandhi Congress president who is elected — not selected — on hard work and merit alone. Sources have suggested that Rahul has now asked close aide Ahmed Patel to apparently find an alternative. If correct, this too is wrong. The new Congress President should not be selected and not like this — elect your party president, and don’t just pick a person who’ll have the blessings of the holy trinity of Sonia, Rahul and Priyanka Gandhi. Find someone who has the diligence, the talent and the committment to take your party forward.

In December 2017, when Rahul Gandhi became the party’s president, every member of the Congress thought he had a magic wand and would turn the tide against Modi.

But that was not to be.

Rahul went on his campaigns in an aggressive mode but clearly failed to tap in on what the people were saying. He was busy giving interviews to channels at rallies, whereas the aam junta was barricaded from meeting him. The Gandhi scion was not able to hear what the people were often saying. It was, ‘Modi... Modi...’

Now, when for the first time, Rahul is set to do something good which will not only help rejuvenate the party but could work wonders for him — maybe he wants another kind of life for himself! Has anyone ever considered this man's right to be happy? — dear Congress netas, don’t place roadblocks in his way. On Tuesday, Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, Sachin Pilot and others reportedly met Rahul; of course they must have asked him to reconsider his decision. Imagine the stress the man must be going through, with all senior leaders trying to persuade him not to step down, but also with him alone having to carry the massive oppobrium of such a huge electoral loss — faced not once but twice.

It has all come with a lot of sharpness, even hate, directed towards one human being, many people derogatorily calling him ‘Pappu’ and him becoming the butt of multiple memes, gifs and jokes. Surely his party and dear ones would understand the person's wish to step down at least now?

Yet, his own party is clinging to Rahul most selfishly.

The party should accept that it’s okay to step down when you feel you have not done well in a professional arena — and politics now must be run professionally. Accept it, Congress, you got a D grade from India’s voters this year, which means you've failed. You really need a new strategy, a new energy and a whole new gameplan. Let Rahul Gandhi go and at least now, put on your thinking hats.

Also read: Only a Gandhi can save Congress

Writer

Rohit David Rohit David @rohitedavid

Senior Assistant Editor, DailyO

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