What is Rahul Gandhi's brand? No one knows

by FP Staff  Sep 14, 2012 12:26 IST

#Adam Roberts   #Rahul Gandhi   #The Economist   #VideoViews   #Vinod Sharma  

Adam Roberts, a journalist in the The Economist who wrote an article on Rahul Gandhi, says that Rahul Gandhi at this stage of the his political career is only involved in gesture politics.

"Rahul tries to do gesture politics. He goes out and spends half a night in the home of a dalit in Uttar Pradesh. But I have been back to those homes, as other journalists have done, and talk to the people of the family and asked what was the follow up, what happened after Rahul Gandhi came and visited your house and they say nothing. It was pure posturing and gesture politics," Roberts told CNN-IBN in a television debate.

"He doesn't do the nuts and bolts of politicians. He doesn't stand up in parliament, does not say what he thinks about policies and does not gets his hands dirty in the dust of politics," he added.

India's Congress party General Secretary Rahul Gandhi gestures to greet supporters during an election rally in Jewar, Greater Noida in Uttar Pradesh on February 23, 2012. AFP

Roberts observes that one of Gandhi's major drawbacks is his lack of communication with the media.

"We have neither a politician committed to serious economic debate, and nuts and bolts of parliament, nor do we have someone committed to media and communication side of it. So the question is where does Rahul Gandhi fit in this. What is his brand? I don't think people have an answer to that," he said.

Also on the debate was Vinod Sharma, political editor of Hindustan Times, who said that it is just a question of time for Rahul Gandhi to taste success in politics.

"Rahul doesn't see to be showing that politics is his bread and butter. It's about time that he started showing that. And if does that he will get his share of successes," Sharma said.