If the recent assembly by-polls are just latest in a long list of political battles that the Congress has been badly losing. After the debacle of 2014 when they were reduced to just 44 seats in the parliament, Congress has been losing one election after the other, but somehow, the loyalists of the party leadership and the media counterparts have never called it out. Instead, they keep on projecting rosy pictures, as if telling fairy tales to the prince and princess of the party.
In the Bihar assembly elections and the recent by-polls that were held in several states, Congress’ failure is glaring in the face of the party. The scenario is bleak, but the sycophant media will never admit it. In Gujarat, the BJP won all 8 seats. From Telangana to Manipur, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka and UP, of the 56 seats that went for by-polls, Congress has got very few and worse, the party leaders and media counterparts refuse to admit or even introspect.
In Uttar Pradesh, Congress failed to win even a single seat out of the 7. The BJP won 6 and the Samajwadi party won 1. The underlying reality is that this happened even after the prolonged theatrics in Hathras by the Congress, especially the Gandhi siblings. The falling down, the motorcade, the media praises and all that PR, including the much-hyped ‘hug’, have all come to zilch.
One of the seats that went for the bypoll was the Bangarmau assembly seat, which had fallen vacant after BJP, and former SP leader Kuldeep Sengar was convicted in a rape case. BJP has retained the seat.
An NDTV article, instead of addressing the grim reality for the party, sees instead “a ray of hope”. The article highlights that “in 2 seats out of the 7, the Congress has finished second.” The article draws hope from the fact that in 2 seats, Congress’ losing candidates have got more votes than the BSP and SP respectively.
It is notable here that in 2019 general elections, Congress, under the leadership of the Gandhis, had fielded 67 candidates. Only 1 (Sonia fro Rae Bareli) won, and 63 candidates lost their deposits.
Though neither any of the Congress leaders nor their media loyalists is talking about it, the humiliation has been the most brutal in Madhya Pradesh. 22 of the 28 seats went to by-polls because the Congress MLAs there had joined the BJP, along with Jyotiraditya Scindia. As if Scindia’s joining the BJP was not enough of a blow to the Congress, the results of the bypolls have made the humiliation complete. However, none in Congress have questioned the party leadership. No one has spoken against Sonia, Rahul or Priyanka, about how letting Scindia go had been a mistake, about how Kamal Nath not only failed to hold on to power but has let internal conflicts and rivalries shatter the party in Madhya Pradesh.
In Gujarat, the bypoll happened because the sitting Congress MLAs had resigned ahead of the Rajya Sabha elections in June. 5 of them have joined the BJP and were fielded against Congress candidates by the BJP. The BJP ended up winning all seats while the Congress scored another big zero.
Congress a burden on alliance partners?
In the 2017 UP Assembly elections, Samajwadi Party had offered 100 seats to the Congress, of which it won only 7. SP won just 54 out of the 298 it had contested. The brutal blow after much hype over Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi’s partnership with Akhilesh was so stark that SP went solo in the 2019 general elections. In the current Bihar elections, RJD conceded 70 seats to Congress, of which the grand old party managed to win just 19. From UP to Bihar, the party has been emerging as a burden on its allies.
Congress leaders blame everything under the sun, but never question the Gandhis
Despite repeated failures and one abysmal performance after the other, Congress leaders are yet to raise serious questions about their own leadership. In the recently concluded elections, Digvijay Singh in Madhya Pradesh blamed EVMs, Bihar Congress leaders, national spokespersons and senior leaders blamed Owaisi and his AIMIM, and some dejected Congress leaders even poured their frustrations on the voters of Bihar, calling them poor and greedy, for voting NDA, but none of them blamed their own leadership. None of them questioned why Congress MLAs go running to the BJP and other parties within months of losing power, and none of them asked why the Gandhis are never held accountable and instead vanish into obscurity, leaving party workers to sift through the debris of their loss.
Neither Sonia Gandhi, nor Rahul or Priyanka have commented on the elections debacle yet. As per reports, Rahul was even set to go on a vacation to Jaisalmer, but suddenly had called it off, citing personal reasons.