oppn parties Another Climbdown By The Congress

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  • Corona cases in India cross 4000 and the death toll stands at 124
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  • Although it was obvious, but the government still clarifies that there is no need to switch off appliances and only lights need to be switched off on April 5 at 9pm after confusion in the minds of some people
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  • The government says people should not use alcohol-based hand sanitizers before lighting diyas or candles on April 5
  • The railways say there is no certainty yet when services will resume after the lockdown and a final decision will be taken in the next few days
  • As coronavirus cases multiply in Assam, six north-east states seal their borders with the state
  • Power System Operation Corporation Ltd. (POCOSO) putting all systems and protocols in place at war-footing to ensure there is no grid failure due to reduction in demand on April 5 at 9 pm
  • Power ministry scotches rumours that the power grid might fail due to the 9-minute blackout called by PM Modi on Sunday, April 5
  • Centre asks people to wear home-made masks if it is absolutely essential for them to step out of homes
  • Centre asks states to allow licensed street vendors to sell essential items
  • 8000 samples were tested across India on April 2, but the government said that testing will be need-based and will not be used as a confidence-boosting measure
  • Air India operating special flights to fly passengers stuck in India since the lockdown
India shows solidarity in the fight against COVID-19 by lighting diyas and candles at 9 pm yesterday as requested by Prime Minister Modi
oppn parties
Another Climbdown By The Congress

By Sunil Garodia
First publised on 2018-07-27 21:46:37

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator. Writes for a number of publications.
It seems that Congress has become habituated to climbdowns and capitulations. Even as people were trying to forget its total capitulation in Karnataka to a party that won less than half the seats than the Congress comes the latest climbdown from the “Rahul as PM” line flaunted after the CWC meeting to a more amenable “we are open” line after protests by several opposition parties.

Buoyed perhaps by better than expected showing in Punjab, Gujarat and Karnataka and ground reports of huge anti-incumbency against the ruling BJP in poll-bound states Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh, as also the new-found confidence and spring-in-the-steps of its president, the CWC rushed into making a declaration it has been forced to clarify and amend.

That Rahul Gandhi is not the automatic choice to lead the so-called federal or united opposition front is clear from the fact that several opposition leaders, mainly West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee of the Trinamool Congress, see themselves as serious contenders. The Congress should have gauged the mood of other leaders before rushing to project Rahul as PM.

The Congress must realize that it all depends on numbers. The last time around both the AIADMK and the TMC were within striking distance of the number of seats won by the Congress. If the TMC improves upon its tally in 2019, which is most likely given the state of the BJP in Bengal, and if the Congress does not improve upon its own, then it will be under severe pressure to yield the top spot to Mamata. Hence, instead of focusing on making Rahul the PM, the party must focus on winning at least 100 seats in 2019. Only then will Rahul be a serious contender in case the opposition combine trumps the NDA.