India Elections: What Next For Rahul Gandhi And His Congress?

India Elections

A second straight election drubbing for opposition Indian National Congress chief Rahul Gandhi has raised severe questions on his leadership and forged a damaging shadow over one of many world’s most distinguished political dynasties.Gandhi, who even lost the household constituency seat of Amethi in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, should face the music at a meeting of party leaders in coming days.

Gandhi misplaced Amethi, a seat he represented since 2004 and which was a Congress stronghold since the 1960s, to the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) Smriti Irani – probably the most gorgeous upset in the Indian election, which noticed Prime Minister Narendra Modi storm back to energy.

The election results made grim reading for Congress barons who’ve relied for generations on the talismanic Nehru-Gandhi name – which rivals the Kennedy clan within the United States and the Bhuttos in Pakistan – to supply electoral success.The Congress won fifty two seats in India’s lower house of parliament, barely bettering the historic low of forty four it had received in Modi’s last landslide in 2014. The party failed to get any seat in thirteen of the country’s 29 states.

When asked about accountability for the loss, Gandhi advised a press convention late on Thursday: “That is between my social gathering and me, between me and the Congress Working Committee.”Party spokesmen have insisted the 48-12 months-old son, grandson and nice-grandson of various Indian prime ministers wouldn’t resign and that technique was to blame for the defeat.

“Now we have to go back to the drawing board,” Congress spokesman Salman Soz informed AFP information agency.

Congress in denial?

But experts say the social gathering and its ruling household are in denial.

“The Congress management has clearly failed. It is a discredited and bankrupt leadership,” Kanchan Gupta, a politics expert at the brand new Delhi-primarily based Observer Research Foundation suppose-tank, advised AFP.Congress has been a virtual one-household occasion for the final century. India has been mesmerised by the twists and turns of its successes and frequent tragedies.

Pro-independence leader Motilal Nehru served as get together president twice between 1919 and 1929.

His son Jawaharlal Nehru turned India’s first prime minister after independence in 1947, ruling until his demise in 1964. His daughter Indira Gandhi after which her son Rajiv Gandhi – Rahul’s father – adopted as premiers. Both have been assassinated in office.

Rajiv’s widow Sonia Gandhi gained two elections because the get together leader but did not develop into prime minister, fearing her Italian origins would lead to a backlash.

Party fortunes had dwindled since she started at hand the reins to son Rahul forward of the 2014 vote and as Modi turned the BJP into a formidable vote machine, seizing on corruption scandals that hit the Congress.The Gandhi scion failed this time to connect with voters in the way in which that Modi did, critics mentioned. The Nehru-Gandhi identify that was once Congress’s biggest asset is now a legal responsibility.

The Congress “campaign was a catastrophe and now their very existence is under question”, Hartosh Singh Bal, political editor of Caravan journal, informed AFP. “The extra it staggers, the extra it helps the BJP.”

Modi made hay mocking the Congress president’s lineage, calling him “shehzada” (prince), which contrasted sharply along with his humble origins as a tea seller. Modi also attacked Rajiv Gandhi, describing him as India’s most corrupt prime minister.


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