The advent of the Aam Aadmi Party and the rise of Narendra Modi have eroded the image of Rahul Gandhi and the older regional parties. It is in this light that the inclusion of Priyanka Vadra, on whose image of freshness the Congress hopes to cash in, has to be seen. While this development may be the party’s counter to Mr. Modi’s rising fortunes, it will further isolate party vice-president Rahul Gandhi. Ms. Vadra’s next move will be watched with interest.
Thekkurichy, Tamil Nadu
Smita Gupta’s report has exposed the hollowness of the Congress’ claim that it has sufficient strength to fight the next election. The old coterie has lost its sheen and the party seems truly starved for new faces. If the Congress decides to go the whole hog and bring in Robert Vadra along with Priyanka, a truly dynastic regime will ensue. Of course, Sonia Gandhi may yet manage to cobble together support from splinter parties, but the Congress’ campaign will by no means be smooth-sailing this time round.
The move to induct Ms. Vadra into active party politics seems to be an act of desperation on the part of the Congress. While the party hopes Ms. Vadra will somehow revive its sagging and shrinking image, it overlooks the fact that her controversial husband Robert is still associated with corruption and amassing ill-gotten wealth. In such a context, Ms. Vadra might emerge as a burden rather than an asset to the party. If allegations that Priyanka herself has acquired plots in Himachal Pradesh through Virbhadra Singh persist, political adversaries won’t fail to capitalise on the chinks in the party armour.
A.V. Reddi Sastri,
The Congress is attempting to make Ms. Vadra’s induction look like a routine pre-election exercise in the interest of improving its performance. But what price the years of indifference, the self-centred and corrupt governance? Can the party, simply by inducting a cheerleader like Ms. Vadra into its squad, hope to atone for playing fast and loose with the nation’s interests for so long?
The Congress is looking jaded and the inclusion of Priyanka Vadra is not likely to enhance its image. It needs to understand that the dynastic charisma it so relies on has faded. Why not project Sachin Tendulkar, who owes much to the party for making him a Rajya Sabha member and choosing him for the Bharat Ratna, as its leading face to rival the Modi factor? The Congress apparatus needs fresh pumping of oxygen and the party must look in all directions.
Victor Frank A.,