During the campaign, Rahul Gandhi kept asserting that China had humiliated India in Ladakh but he does not get it that in war, people like to believe they are winning.
Between the Bihar chief minister’s chair and RJD’s Tejashwi Yadav stood an avowed friend: the Congress. Winning just 19 out of the 70 seats it contested, the Congress has undoubtedly made Tejashwi rue his magnanimity.
With dwindling national presence, Sonia and Rahul Gandhi’s party is now a burden on its state allies. Camaraderie and media hoopla with Rahul dragged Akhilesh Yadav to a humiliating defeat in the 2017 Uttar Pradesh elections. In Maharashtra, the Congress got to share power by sheer fluke despite being the smallest of the big four.
In last over a decade, in no state has the Congress got re-elected to power for a second term as the single largest party. Except in Jharkhand, it not helped any pre-poll ally come to power lately.
So edgy is this making its regional allies that the Shiv Sena openly mocked it in its mouthpiece Saamna, saying RJD would have come to power but the Congress pulled it down.
All this does not seem to affect the Congress or convince it to introspect. Family loyalist Archana Dalmia posted condescending tweets about free vaccines just after the defeat. Instead of showing any humility, she even said Bihar did not ‘deserve’ social worker-politicians like Pappu Yadav.
During the campaign, the Congress social media got down to abusive language against the prime minister, using hashtags that called Narendra Modi names. This despite ample evidence over the last two decades that Modi has got stronger each time his enemies abused him, starting from Sonia’s infamous jibe “Maut ka Saudagar”, after which Modi stormed back to power in Gujarat in 2007.
But that is not the only instance which proves the Congress has ceased to learn from its past mistakes. In its spite towards Modi, it continues to cross the line and spite the nation.
Rahul Gandhi kept harping on his assumption that China had humiliated India in Ladakh.
This is unforgivable. He does not get it that in war, people like to believe they are winning. China itself has admitted to scores of casualties on its side and that Indian troops have been occupying land that it claims. Besides, there was a crucial local angle. The Bihar regiment has been at the forefront of the current conflict, has suffered the most casualties, and its soldiers have fought bravely.
As if so much self-harm was not enough, Congress senior P Chidambaram promised to restore Article 370 which gave Kashmir special status. Its abrogation in August last year was celebrated nationwide. This was apparently a nudge by Team Rahul to Left-liberals and Muslims.
The Congress was again pandering to “Islamists” and separatists, right when “Islamic terror” was spilling blood in Oslo, Paris and Vienna.
And while Congress was busy ruining the China-sent opportunity created by the COVID-19 pandemic which is killing thousands and has rendered lakhs of migrant labourers jobless and penniless, Modi was rescuing his state ally and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar from anger and anti-incumbency with a high-voltage, hopeful campaign.
And that made all the difference. As Tejashwi may say, “With friends like these…”
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