How a ‘liberal’ filmmaker went from criticising Rahul Gandhi to saying ‘I am on your side’ and what it shows

Hansal Mehta

‘Liberals’ in India take pride in imaginary conversations they have in their minds which they call ‘speaking truth to the power’. They also like to believe that all things that go wrong with them are the side effects of these imaginary conversations. Except, this ‘standing up against fascism‘ rule goes for a toss whenever the ruling party is non-BJP. In which case, they’d stand with the corrupt and convicted politicians serving jail term only because they are in opposition.

‘Liberal’ filmmaker Hansal Mehta on Saturday kicked up a storm after he lowkey pretended to criticise Rahul Gandhi and the lack of democracy in Congress.

Mehta’s tweet came just days after Jitin Prasada quit Congress to join the BJP triggering so-called criticism where everyone worth their biscuits asked Congress to reevaluate why such tall leaders are quitting the party.

Except, Mehta’s ‘rebellion’ was not taken rightly by Congress-supporting-neutral journalists.

Apparently, if the dissenting Congressis within Congress don’t have the strength to take on Rahul Gandhi, how will they even take on the BJP?

Other independent filmmakers and ‘journalists’ too chimed in to accuse Mehta of giving ‘faltu advice’ for Congress and not BJP.

More such pearls of wisdom were exchanged where Mint columnist Salil Tripathi inadvertently ended up comparing opposition leaders to a lamppost.

Soon enough, official Congress workers, too, joined in to question Mehta for questioning Rahul Gandhi.

Gaurav Pandhi attacks Mehta

Mehta was questioned about his professional decision to act as Creative Producer to The Accidental Prime Minister, the political drama based on Sanjaya Baru’s book of the same name which spoke about India under UPA era and how Dr Manmohan Singh, the then Prime Minister of India was a victim to Congress’ dynastic approach.

However, upon being shown his place, Mehta quickly acknowledged the mistake of being associated with the film. After all, ‘I am on your side’.

But why this sudden discussion on Congress leadership? Well…

Congress worker Gaurav Pandhi attacking Hansal Mehta

When a visibly irritated Mehta replied slightly rudely, he got another round of scolding from ‘neutral’ journalists. But then Mehta clarified on how will Congress manage to win 2024 if the party does not introspect and reinvent itself?

You see, this is how it is.

Congress and their loyalists are still not able to get over the shock of not only losing 2019 elections, but BJP outperforming them and itself from the previous term. Something that was ‘rightfully theirs’ was taken away not once, but twice. That it might happen a third time is now making them nervous.

This ‘liberal vs liberal’ mock fight is just that. Gentle nudges to try to wake up the emperors because, well, at this rate, Rahul Gandhi will also lose Wayanad next elections.

This ‘Rahul Gandhi/Congress must introspect’ is a tirade that comes up every few months whenever someone leaves the party. Remember, this did not come when Congress was left with a big fat zero in West Bengal elections, where BJP made significant progress against ruling TMC. Despite Congress not winning a single seat and BJP going from 2 seats in previous elections to primary opposition party, it was the BJP that was painted as the ‘losers’.

Defeating the BJP somehow appears to be the bigger goal than getting Congress to win.

But with BJP out of power, the Congress ecosystem will be back at putting these intellectuals where they wish to go, like heading some film school somewhere be made in charge of some department somewhere. Which is what they crave. Which is why they want the Congress back in power.

Not because they think Rahul Gandhi or any other Congress leader for matter is a brilliant and able administrator, but because it will only be under Congress their ecosystem will thrive unquestioned.

Nirwa Mehta: Politically incorrect. Author, Flawed But Fabulous.