Disclaimer: Before I delve into this highly political and grossly debatable issue, let me make a few things clear to the readers. Number one- This blog doesn’t necessarily show my political leanings. Number two- I am in no way a supporter of dynastic politics prevalent in almost all the political parties in the country. And third and the final thing- I am as much a victim of price rise, corruption, black-money, terror and insecurity, as any of you are. No need to say, I am like most of us, frustrated with the functioning of UPA-II.
Now let’s get on with the story:
On May 22, 2004, when Dr Manmohan Singh, first became the Prime Minister of India, the country was in disbelief over the ‘sacrifice’ of an Italian born lady, often under fire from her opponents over the place of her origin.
Being the daughter-in-law of arguably the first family of India is not easy and being widowed at the age of 45 with two kids is even more terrible.
However, Sonia did the commendable job of not only living up to the expectations of her family but also bringing to power her ‘family’s party’ that was in shambles when she took over the reins.
Amidst all the hoopla over her ‘sacrifice’, one man was observing the Indian political scenario with opulent concentration, waiting for his turn. The child was born with a silver spoon and a democracy at his disposal- Rahul Gandhi.
Like his father Rajiv, Rahul was also an ‘outsider’ when he reluctantly joined active politics in 2004, fighting general elections from Amethi and winning by a landslide margin.
Since then, there is no looking back for this arguably the most eligible bachelor of the country. From the Kalawati episode to the Youth Congress revival, Rahul Gandhi slogged his way into the Indian politics.
I am not denying that coming from an affluent family with ‘Gandhi’ surname makes things easier, but one shouldn’t forget that India is a democracy. One cannot be ‘appointed’ as a leader. You have to win the elections. So calling Rahul Gandhi a ‘despot’ doesn’t really suit the situation.
Rahul Gandhi, probably the only man in the country to have the luxury of getting a cabinet berth the day he feels like, sticking to party work to build his base in politics is as commendable as Sonia denying Prime Minister’s chair.
It was undeniably his efforts that saw Congress reviving itself in the politically significant Uttar Pradesh.
Moving on to Bhatta Parsaul incident, it became evident that Rahul has not only acquired the status of a mass leader but also emerged from his family’s shadow into an acceptable and fairly serious political personality of India.
The way he raided the Mayawti bastion on a motorcycle covering his face and lent much needed support to the downtrodden, not only escalated his stature, but also attracted praise from his sworn enemies- Lal Krishna Advani and cousin Varun Gandhi.
To follow it up, the ‘Padyatra’ that he undertook prior to his Kisan Mahapanchayat might prove to be the decisive factor in the upcoming Uttar Pradesh assembly elections.
The mass support that he got during his Bhatta Parsaul visit and now during his Padyatra has shaken the Mayawati stronghold.
With the ‘Son’ coming out of the shadows of family, no wonder, everyone in Congress and the rest of the country is expecting him to take over the reins of the Central government.
Detractors be damned!
(The views expressed by the author are personal)