By Overrated Outcast
Yesterday was quite a shocking day for all of us. Everyone in our party was taken aback. We had spent the last few weeks preparing for the next version of the UPA. We never expected the people of this country to betray us like that. But, despite our hurt and anguish, we will accept the wish of the people with grace and humility.
Having said that, it’s not that bad. All is not lost! There are still a few reasons for us to be a bit cheerful. Our voting percentage was enough for us to retain our national party status. And a large majority of our candidates didn’t lose their deposit even in the seats that they lost miserably. So that’s something, isn’t it?
However, it is very important to quell some really unsubstantiated rumours out there that are being spread by nefarious and mischievous elements – as in, agents of Narendra Modi in the media who are intent on blaming this defeat on someone who in no way should have to shoulder any of the blame. This innocent victim of circumstance did not have a hand in our impending electoral rout. So let us all agree on the true need of this historic hour: to make sure no one blames Rahul Gandhi!
I understand it’s the easiest thing to do. After all, he was the face of our campaign. He was on every poster, every leaflet, every video, every banner on the internet, every television spot for our campaign. Yet, it’s wrong to put the onus of the failure of the campaign on Rahulji. When an advertisement for a flawed product fails to incite any excitement in the product, does anyone blame the hot model used in the advertisement? I don’t think so.
I’m not saying that Rahul baba didn’t contribute to the campaign at all. He was the one that conceptualized it, approved it, led it, put the wheels into motion, delegated appropriate tasks and micromanaged it from his laptop. He set the agenda for our meetings, chose the amount of time we would spend discussing each issue, decided on what we would talk about publicly. He remotely managed the negotiations with our allies – since he has a problem actually showing up for meetings with them -- and was the one who had the final say on seat sharing agreements. Hell, he even selected the stationary we used in the office. Basically, it was his baby!
But.... or rather BUT, unlike the BJP, we’re a party that believes in collective responsibility. Especially immediately after a major electoral loss.
Look, a leader is just as good as his team. And let’s face it, Rahulji has a terrible team! The worst! Even Julius Caesar got better advice from Brutus than Rahul Gandhi got from his lieutenants. For example, what sort of incompetent fool would send someone as sweet and angelic as our Rahul baba to the lair of satan's offspring for his first interview. It was like Gotham city sending Robin’s intern to fight their biggest villain while Batman stayed back in his cave, watching the destruction of his beloved home on television. Is it really fair to blame a person for acting on the bad advice he got?
We also failed Rahul baba when we didn’t tell him that going around the country taking credit for things like mobile telephony and satellite television wasn’t really the best strategy. We failed him by not gagging his poorly behaved mouth when it uttered strange words like escape velocity.
Therefore, any which way you look at it, we only have ourselves to blame. We failed Rahul Gandhi. He didn’t fail us.
You know who really is to blame? The albatross around our neck called Manmohan Singh. Rahul Gandhi has given that man and his government so much leeway! He didn’t attend most Lok Sabha sessions or ask any questions because he didn’t want to seem to be interfering. Let’s please also stop with all this talk of ‘weak MMS.’ Does anyone really think that Rahul Gandhi could wield any influence over someone as strong willed and as independent as Manmohan Singh? If he did, then why would he have to stage that meltdown over the ordinance – which he did with a heavy heart.
Besides, do you think our party would have had any chance in this election if it had been led by someone else? The truth of the matter is that the Gandhi family is the glue that binds our party together. Without them, we’d be even more dysfunctional than the third front. We should all be thankful to Rahul Gandhi for his tireless efforts in bringing us quite close to being the party that he wants us to be. After the electoral rout in December, he categorically said that he would try to mould the Congress party to be more like the Aam Aadmi Party. In fact, if he continues to follow the same path that he has had for the past few years, our party might even end up with the same vote share as the AAP!
To be clear, our party might have ninety-nine problems, but Rahul Gandhi isn’t one of them.
Don’t forget that no party does democracy better than we do! In fact, in the miraculous event that we had won, we were ready to appoint a forty year old man-child with no experience in any level of government to the most important office in the land. This is a great lesson for all the children in the country. You can achieve anything you want to, as long as you're born into the right family!
Admit it, everyone. You’re going to miss us when we’re gone. You won’t have us to kick around anymore! But don’t worry. We’re not going anywhere. We’re the Indian National Congress. We’ve risen from the ashes many times before. And we will do that again. We’re going to be back even bigger and stronger than before. All we have to do next time is to focus our campaign on women’s empowerment and RTI.
If that fails, there’s always our secret killer plan: Priyanka lao, desh bachao.
Overrated Outcast is a writer based in Delhi. You can follow him on twitter @over_rated.
Your guide to the latest election news, analysis, commentary, live updates and schedule for Lok Sabha Elections 2019 on firstpost.com/elections. Follow us on Twitter and Instagram or like our Facebook page for updates from all 543 constituencies for the upcoming general elections.
Updated Date: May 17, 2014 15:16:04 IST