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Motor mouth Digvijay - Congress' gain or bane?

By Biplob Ghosal | Last Updated: Thursday, November 17, 2011 - 13:06
Biplob Ghosal
Loud and Clear

His utterances make headlines. His statements are the `subject of research` for some. Does he need further introduction? He is Congress’ very own motor mouth Digvijay Singh!

Well, his statements might be creating huge controversies, but it goes without saying that many a time Digvijay has been successful in turning away attention from debatable issues, whether it was the Batla encounter case or Anna’s anti-corruption movement.

I fail to understand why a senior leader of the Congress party is continuously making such bizarre statements, and the party leadership has kept mum or shall I say given him a free run.

Let's take the example of the Anna Hazare episode. It’s hard to recollect all his statements as every now and then, Digvijay tried to defame one of the most popular movements in the post-Independence era.

Though the general secretary has the right to point fingers, but by doing so, he is contradicting his party's stand. On one hand the Congress has always been giving an assurance of a strong Lokpal Bill. Even party president Sonia Gandhi and the 'Yuvraaj' have not only promised the nation about bringing an effective law, Rahul Gandhi went ahead of the Bill itself, when he suggested that Lokpal be made as a constitutional body.

However, at the same time, Digvijay has tried to question the integrity of Team Anna members and scuttle the movement. And herein lies the big problem for the Congress, as people are talking about the party's discomfort towards an effective ombudsman bill.

What makes me wonder is whether the senior Congress leader is acting on his own or does he have the backing of party president Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, for whom he is often considered as political ‘guru’.

People might question me for dragging in Sonia and Rahul into all this. But I fail to recollect any incident wherein any one of them has condemned Singh’s statements.

As he is one of the most prominent faces of the Congress, his controversial statements can be considered dangerous for the grand old party.

In fact, I would like to say that his comments give an impression of Congress trying to dilute major issues.

Let’s recollect some other incidents which gave the media and the political circles enough fodder for discussion.

Batla case is one of the most bizarre examples of such kind. The Congress general secretary hinted that the encounter might be “fake” at a time when the whole country was mourning the death of Delhi Police officer MC Sharma.

The ex-chief minister said, "What happened during the Batla House encounter was very sad. It can be seen in the photograph that one of the boys was shot in the head. It is impossible to be shot at in the head during a scuffle.”

Later, Singh had a tongue-in-cheek moment when even the ever vigilant NHRC gave a clean chit to the police.

Digvijay’s latest blooper came last month when he denounced spiritual guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar as a BJP-RSS agent, to which he got a befitting reply from Sri Sri asking politician to join his Art of Living course for a better quality of life.

What makes one laugh is when the Congress general secretary says he finds it difficult to understand as to why his statements trigger such a reaction and asserts that he has "always spoken the truth".

Although the former Madhya Pradesh CM has been slammed by many for his ‘outrageous’ comments, the Congress has strangely kept mum on the issue. The party seems to be gaining from all the ‘mindless’ speeches of Digvijay, else why would the ruling party tolerate a person who has been facing criticism from all sections of society?

Digvijay Singh has given base to the above theory, while claiming that his comments are always taken seriously by his party leaders.

Thus, as a citizen of this country, I wish Congress to make its stand clear on Digvijay Singh and his antics every now and then.

First Published: Thursday, November 17, 2011 - 13:06

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