The last week has seen a tom-and-jerry show in the legislature of Rajasthan. Amidst much of media hype, Rajasthan’s Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has projected the victory(V) sign in a proud display of strength during a press conference.
Of course, Mr. Gehlot has proven yet again why he is counted amongst the veterans and one of the most astute politicians in the INC. He is apparently a clear winner out of the failed coup. Rightly so, he has started taunting Mr. Pilot with comments like, “being handsome and speaking good English” doesn’t make you win the power game.
Congress has been facing a lot of issues for almost a decade, but the most prominent amongst them is the war between the old guard and the young guns. Time and again, the young guns have faced embarrassing defeats or ridiculous send-outs. Scindia luckily got a better deal, while Pilot’s crash was a result of the pre-emptive strike by the veteran.
But who emerged as the net loser in the battle of old guard Vs young guns? Gehlot looks like a winner apparently, but is he? With just 101 MLAs(claimed by Congress, down from 129 earlier claimed) in his camp, standing barely at the exact majority mark, he has surely struck the axe on his own foot. Now the question is not if, but till when can Gehlot continue with a wounded leg (or razor thin majority)?
Finally, the future of any party rests with its young leader,s bringing fresh ideas and methods to resurrect the party from the decay. If Congress keeps kicking out its young leaders like Scindia and Pilot and ridiculing them, it is just expediting its own doom. From Jaitley and Sushma Swaraj to Anurag Thakur and Tejaswi Surya, the BJP believed in its young guns and that’s a major reason why it’s never short of good leaders. There will be a time when these Gehlots and Kamal Naths would wither, cultivating a new batch of leaders wouldn’t be an option then as it would be too late. But how does it matter, the family will still be into deep slumber, and their sworn loyalists would still be waiting for them to wake up and gift them with the next Gandhi who would again be hesitant to come out of his sycophancy!
Apoorv Mishra, GATE Scholar, AIACTR, IPU, Delhi.