Domination of apolitical personalities in his camp an issue

A large number of Congressmen appear to be getting disenchanted with party vice-president Rahul Gandhi and his capabilities of galvanising the party in the aftermath of the dubbing it got in the Lok Sabha elections.

Not many leaders have stuck their neck out as former Minister T.H. Mustapha had to suffer the ignominy of being suspended from the primary membership of the party for certain harsh remarks against Mr. Gandhi.

But the disenchantment is rather audible on several party platforms in a subtle manner, without any direct reference to Mr. Gandhi.

A KPCC resolution at a post-election evaluation meeting cleverly concealed such disaffection by admitting that the party had failed to project a strong leader who could take on BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi.

But sensing the sensitiveness of such criticism, the KPCC released a corrected version of the resolution in which it claimed that it was the leadership of Sonia Gandhi and Mr. Gandhi that helped the party overcome several hurdles during electioneering.

Several leaders had earlier expressed reservations about Mr. Gandhi’s style of functioning. There have also been murmurs about the domination of apolitical personalities in his camp, known here as the Rahul Brigade, and there are several senior leaders who had felt offended by its responses.

The post-election evaluation meeting of the KPCC also echoed the disenchantment of the party leaders.

KPCC president V.M. Sudheeran made the party stance clear by stating that targeting one individual for the party’s drubbing was not acceptable. His swift action of suspending Mr. Mustapha at least put the lid on any open expression of opinion.

The KPCC resolution also expresses hope that the party will be able to come back into reckoning under the leadership of Ms. Sonia and Mr. Gandhi. But party leaders here feel that Mr. Gandhi should change his functioning style if this has to happen.

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