One of the major political parties of India, Indian National Congress (or INA), is also one of the oldest democratic political parties in the world. Founded in 1885 by A.O. Hume, Dadabhai Naoroji and others, it played a major role in the Indian Independence Movement, and gradually became India’s dominant political party. This dominance continues even now, with the Sonia Gandhi-led party ruling the Government for the past 10 years.
However, between 1885 and 2013, a lot has changed. Rahul Gandhi has promised a “new” Congress party, which we “will be proud of and that has your voice embedded inside” as an alternative to the existing Congress party, which we all knew as essentially a democratic party. Let’s look at how it has demoted itself to this level
7. The “election” of Pranab Mukherjee as the President of India
Against the wish of a billion people, Pranab Mukherjee was elected as the President of India. Pranab Mukherjee had been a part of the Congress party since the reign of Indira Gandhi, and had been an active member ever since. He was even considered as one of the most loyal members of the party. This move was, indeed, considered by many as a political decision made not by the Legislative Assemblies, but by Sonia herself.
6. A congress of people at large or the dictatorship of two persons?
One of the most astonishing aspects of this party is that though the party claims to be a “democratic” one, the top two positions of the party are held by Sonia and her son Rahul Gandhi. This signifies that all the core decisions are taken by these two personalities—and any of our dear “elected” members have no courage to question them. You were talking about democracy, eh?
5. Majorly a Gandhi-Party, not a democratic Congress Party
After Indira Gandhi was assassinated, the power shifted to Rajiv Gandhi. After his assassination in 1991, the power again was transferred to his wife, Sonia Gandhi, an Italian by birth. Finally now, party followers are looking up to Rahul Gandhi, Sonia and Rajiv’s son, who promised us a party with our “voice embedded”, if re-elected.
4. Leader by Birth, and Not by Deeds
India is indeed a magical land where a strong and powerful leader always gives birth to a clan of future leaders. Yes, here, even leaders are manufactured—whether or not you have the capability and the dedication doesn’t matter at all. Take for example our very own Gandhi family. After Indira Gandhi, the “throne” was passed on to Rajiv Gandhi; a brief span after his death, the “throne” was passed on to Sonia, from whom it has been transferred to Rahul Gandhi. Sometimes we wonder, whether we live in the 21st century or in some medieval century, under some monarchal rule!
3. Criminal Ministers, go to jail!
This famous proclamation by Rahul Gandhi was heard a few months back and took the whole country by…err…surprise. Invariably, this decision was put into effect within a few days and many ministers and politicians, including Lalu Prasad Yadav, were jailed—only to be released just after the elections were over.
2. First Family, First Opinion
Yes, it does sound like some school teacher making his/her pupils stand in a queue according to their heights—“taller children at the back, shorter in the front”. Okay, apology for the bad joke, but the position of our Government is, kind of, similar. The First Family of India, the Gandhi family’s opinion are always regarded as the “it” decision—no one has the right to question it. It is for the same reason that the corrupt ministers continue to hold their seats even after millions of scams! Take for example the plight of Kalmadi, and all your doubts will be answered.
1. Leaders owe to the First Family and not to the Public
The Congress Leaders, the flag bearers of democracy, have their allegiance to the “First Family” only and not to the general public on whose votes they have bagged their powerful seats. Nation always comes after the first family, and not vice versa. After all, their colorful identities would be camouflaged only under the shadow of the first family.