PRIYANKA GANDHI

priyanka-s-bungalow-allotted-to-bjp-media-cell-chief

Priyanka’s bungalow allotted to BJP Media Cell chief

The Centre on Sunday allotted Priyanka Gandhi's 35 Lodhi Estate government bungalow to Bharatiya Janata Party MP and Media Cell in-charge Anil Baluni on medical grounds.

Priyanka Gandhi Vadra (PGV), Congress General Secretary, earlier this week was asked to vacate her government bungalow by 01 August after the government canceled her allotment.

06 Jul 2020
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Will Gokhale Marg, Lucknow be Priyanka’s new address?

It was in the year 2007-2008 and I was working with an English weekly Sahara Time and used to be part of the editorial meetings. The then Editor-in-chief Uday Sinha in his almost every editorial discussion on politics used to say that ‘if Rahul Gandhi or Priyanka Gandhi want success in politics, then they must make Lucknow as their base at least for five years”. Apparently his words are proving to be true after his sad demise around a month ago in Lucknow.

Years later it is being gauged whether Priyanka Gandhi Vadra would change her base to Lucknow. Several media reports are doing rounds and requests from the party leaders are pouring in for her to think over it. It could be a game-changer move as some say.

The Centre this week asked Priyanka to vacate her Lodi Estate bungalow in view of Priyanka being no longer an SPG protectee. She has been very active in Uttar Pradesh which was once Congress’ pocket borough. The state leadership is urging her to shift her base from Delhi to Lucknow in a bid to strengthen the organization and unnerve the BJP ahead of the Assembly polls due in the next two years.

The house at Gokhale Marg in Lucknow was “refurbished” in October 2019 to enable her to stay there for a longer duration. She doesn’t need to look for a house in Lucknow. However, she needs to take a call whether she wants to shift her base to Lucknow permanently. UP Congress president Ajay Kumar Lallu also remained non-committal about her Lucknow plans.

UP is the key battleground state that sends the maximum number of Lok Sabha MP that is 80. Priyanka left not even a single issue on which the Yogi government could be targeted. Political slugfest between Priyanka and BSP chief Mayawati is also continuing when Priyanka called Mayawati an “undeclared BJP spokesperson”.

She has been working tirelessly in UP whether her visit to Umbha village to arranging buses to ferry stranded migrant workers back to their native places. Her shifting to Lucknow will come as a shot in the arm, as workers may get emboldened to challenge the ruling BJP in the run-up to the 2022 assembly elections.

(By Rakesh Ranjan)

04 Jul 2020
priyanka-s-bungalow-allotted-to-bjp-media-cell-chief

Priyanka’s bungalow allotted to BJP Media Cell chief

By IndianMandarins 06 Jul 2020

The Centre on Sunday allotted Priyanka Gandhi's 35 Lodhi Estate government bungalow to Bharatiya Janata Party MP and Media Cell in-charge Anil Baluni on medical grounds.

Priyanka Gandhi Vadra (PGV), Congress General Secretary, earlier this week was asked to vacate her government bungalow by 01 August after the government canceled her allotment.

will-gokhale-marg-lucknow-be-priyanka-s-new-address-

Will Gokhale Marg, Lucknow be Priyanka’s new address?

By Rakesh Ranjan 04 Jul 2020

It was in the year 2007-2008 and I was working with an English weekly Sahara Time and used to be part of the editorial meetings. The then Editor-in-chief Uday Sinha in his almost every editorial discussion on politics used to say that ‘if Rahul Gandhi or Priyanka Gandhi want success in politics, then they must make Lucknow as their base at least for five years”. Apparently his words are proving to be true after his sad demise around a month ago in Lucknow.

Years later it is being gauged whether Priyanka Gandhi Vadra would change her base to Lucknow. Several media reports are doing rounds and requests from the party leaders are pouring in for her to think over it. It could be a game-changer move as some say.

The Centre this week asked Priyanka to vacate her Lodi Estate bungalow in view of Priyanka being no longer an SPG protectee. She has been very active in Uttar Pradesh which was once Congress’ pocket borough. The state leadership is urging her to shift her base from Delhi to Lucknow in a bid to strengthen the organization and unnerve the BJP ahead of the Assembly polls due in the next two years.

The house at Gokhale Marg in Lucknow was “refurbished” in October 2019 to enable her to stay there for a longer duration. She doesn’t need to look for a house in Lucknow. However, she needs to take a call whether she wants to shift her base to Lucknow permanently. UP Congress president Ajay Kumar Lallu also remained non-committal about her Lucknow plans.

UP is the key battleground state that sends the maximum number of Lok Sabha MP that is 80. Priyanka left not even a single issue on which the Yogi government could be targeted. Political slugfest between Priyanka and BSP chief Mayawati is also continuing when Priyanka called Mayawati an “undeclared BJP spokesperson”.

She has been working tirelessly in UP whether her visit to Umbha village to arranging buses to ferry stranded migrant workers back to their native places. Her shifting to Lucknow will come as a shot in the arm, as workers may get emboldened to challenge the ruling BJP in the run-up to the 2022 assembly elections.

(By Rakesh Ranjan)

congress-goes-more-aggressive-against-modi-govt-remains-unfazed

Congress goes more aggressive against Modi; govt remains unfazed

By IndianMandarins 28 Apr 2020

Congress is constantly putting pressure on the Modi government whether it is on ramping up testing or Rs 1 lakh crore package for MSME sector or asking some measures for migrant labourers or accusing a scam in rapid test kits. But the government is working in its own way unfazed with suggestions and criticism. Moreover, people appear to be in no mood to pay attention, despite more aggression shown by the Congress.

Now former Congress president Rahul Gandhi has come up with allegations of a scam in the supply of rapid test kits to the government to detect coronavirus cases saying it was unbelievable that people were indulging in profiteering from suffering people. Gandhi requested the PM to take immediate action to bring the culprits to book.

Gandhi tweeted: “That any human being would try and profiteer from the immeasurable suffering of millions of his brothers and sisters is beyond belief and comprehension. This scam is an insult to every Indian. I urge the PM to act swiftly to bring the corrupt to justice.”

Earlier he requested the PM to clear ‘bottlenecks’ and ramp up coronavirus testing in the country holding the PM responsible for this delay in the same breath. He said: "Random testing is the key to beating the virus".

India has to scale up COVID-19 testing from present 40,000 to one lakh per day. Experts agree that mass random testing is the key to beating Corona. In India, a bottleneck is stopping us from scaling testing from the current 40,000 per day to 1 lakh tests a day, for which test kits are already available.

Sonia Gandhi demanded a special package for the MSME industry with former Union defence minister A K Antony and former Union HRD minister Kapil Sibal having their own sets of demands from the government. This could be a good tactic on part of the Congress to keep the government on toes.

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Communication deficiency defines Congress’ crisis?

By Rakesh Ranjan 20 Apr 2020

Of late Politics in India has become a game of perception besides a few other things but any political establishment failing to understand this very fact is bound to fail in its objective. Perception comes with better communication skillsets.

Any political establishment has its own sets of strengths and weaknesses but the real skill of its leadership is to make propaganda of its strength and sidetrack its weakness. None of the political parties is an exception be it the BJP or the Congress or any regional party.

The most important case in the point here is PM Modi’s immense and untiring capability of striking chords with the masses of the country that becomes BJP’s strength eclipsing the party’s other weaknesses. On the other hand, lack of communication skills and strategy are Congress’ biggest deficiency that eclipses all its core strengths that the party has. It is also not true that the Congress has any dearth of such leaders but the issue is whom do you showcase.

India thinks, understands and communicates more eloquently in Hindi or in any other regional Indian languages or dialects. Masses are able to relate themselves with the BJP as Modi speaks Hindi in his Gujarati accent effortlessly and similarly most of its leaders do the same whereas most of the Congress leaders who are chosen to connect with the masses fail to strike chords with them rather their elitist appearance and disconnect with the ground driving masses away.

The BJP leadership appears to echo aspiration and sentiment of the ground whereas Congress’ leadership, even though they talk facts in an articulate manner fails to connect with the masses. Sonia, Rahul and Priyanka that most of the young budding leaders and back-room boys of the Congress carry the elitist paraphernalia around them making people hesitant to reach out to them and so their failure to connect with the masses is bound to happen.

Congress appears to have been taking less effort in firming up its communication strategy whereas the BJP puts in constant effort to keep its communication strategy strengthened be it on issues, individuals, timings and communication mediums, etc.

(By Rakesh Ranjan)

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Failure of Congress High-command: How many Scindhias?

By IndianMandarins 11 Mar 2020

When PM Narendra Modi as Gujarat CM gave a ‘war cry’ of Congress Mukt Bharat (Congress free India), he must have thought about it very well before uttering it but he would definitely have not imagined that the Congress would be complimenting him in his mission. Resignation of Jyotiraditya Scindhia from the primary membership of the Indian National Congress (INC) following his meeting with the PM indicates that only.

How? The Congress leadership has not only failed to retain Scindhia but the Congress High-command let other leaders to part ways from the grand old party with a heavy heart which many experts term as Congress leadership’s suicidal move and the BJP calling the  same as ‘Congress Mukt Bharat’. We call it just a symptom which has gripped the Congress for a few decades.

Scindhia being the latest victim as very recently a close aid of Rahul Gandhi, former Haryana State Congress President and Dalit leader Ashok Tanwar resigned just ahead of Assembly elections. A Brahmin leader and Congress stalwart Jitin Prasada has been on brinks for many years now.

Loosing out Hemanta Biswa Sarma in Assam is still termed as the the biggest loss of the Congress who is delivering goods for the BJP. The way Congress leadership mishandled division of Andhra Pradesh and ill-treated Jagan Reddy and his mother that is an irreparable loss to the Congress which has almost disappeared from southern India except in Kerala.

There is no qualm in saying that the so-called old guards of Congress have turned more into liabilities than assets now and their decisions quite often proved to be harming the interest of the party but serving their own interest. Decades back Motilal Vohra and Digvijay Singh had ensured exit of Ajit Jogi setting Congress out of power for over 15 years in Chhattisgarh. Now Scindhia is out Congress and Digvijay Singh and Kamal Nath figure in this time around.

In Schindhia’s exit from the Congress, even a political novice can well understand that ignoring and sidelining him by Kamal Nath and Digvijaya showed their political eccentrics. Jyotiriditya’s stature deserved Rajya Sabha berth if not then at least he deserved more respect in the organisation.

Even in power-politics; recognition and self-respect become more important than power and position after a certain period of time. Be it Reddy, Jogi, Hemanta Biswa Sarma, Ashok Tanwar or Jyotiraditya, the Congress high command appears to have been miserably in maintaining its gravity to keep hold of political forces and resources.

Ignoring many seasoned Lok Sabha members over Adhir Ranjan Choudhary as leader of the party in Lok Sabha and ignoring Pramod Tiwari for infinity in UP will lead to some more disasters. One can blame Modi-Shah to make their bit to make India Congress-free, but who will be blamed for complimenting them?

(By Rakesh Ranjan)

rahul-gandhi----the-tina-factor-within-the-congress

Rahul Gandhi -- the TINA factor within the Congress

By IndianMandarins 09 Mar 2020

It has been quite a while since the name of Rahul Gandhi being once again doing round to be made president of the Congress with every important leader asserting that there is no alternative (TINA). He is the only leader with acceptability from all across but Rahul Gandhi is not ready to take up the responsibility.

Despite the fact that not only Sonia Gandhi willing and trying hard to hand over baton to Rahul but he is not ready to take up the responsibility of Congress president once again. The way he attacks Prime Minister Narendra Modi, it indicates that he is here to take on the Modi government but not with any responsibility. Reportedly the Congress is ready to go to any extent to defeat the BJP impacting the Modi-Shah duo but that be done with ad-hocism.

But political analysts feel that tentative approach to deal with the BJP is not a long term solution and half-hogged approach of the Congress has not been able to corner the BJP on such issues where they could have taken the upper hand over the BJP. Party workers are also discouraged and states like Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and some other Hindi belt states need a leadership and organisational structure as they are finding it difficult to keep their flocks together.

Not only senior Congress leaders but second rung leadership of the party are of the view that there is no other face as acceptable as Rahul Gandhi who also has good intent at heart, zero baggage and consistently takes an aggressive stand in fighting against the might of the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi. They also want a long-term advisory role for Sonia Gandhi to capitalise on her experience and expertise in handling Congress affairs and that would help the new president to revive Congress and taking on the BJP.

(By Rakesh Ranjan)

is-the-congress-looking-at-priyanka-as-its-hope-for-future

Is the Congress looking at Priyanka as its hope for future?

By IndianMandarins 10 Jul 2019

New Delhi: Is the first family of the Congress silently grooming another member of the family for the top job in the party in the days to come? Actually the way Priyanka Gandhi Vadra is slowly but steadily working in the party, it appears that she is the next leader to take up the top job in the Congress obviously not immediately but may be sometimes just before the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.

 

Priyanka Gandhi is general secretary of the party at the moment and like many other leaders she did not resign from the post in view of poll debacle of the party. She even did not speak much about the resignation of Rahul Gandhi only saying that she respect his brother’s decision on the issue. But like many other leaders in the Congress who are keeping silent unless it becomes mandatory for them to speak, Priyanka is taking on the government and the Bharatiya Janata Party by her tweets and many other ways.

 

Though this might be a very far-fetched conclusion but still hold the ground that in view of Rahul Gandhi deciding to stick to his decision of not continuing as party chief the family may push forward her for the top job. Not only they but the entire party knows it very well that only Gandhies can run the show in the Congress but to blunt the argument of the BJP that only Gandhies can become president of the party, they will make some temporary arrangement as party chief before she takes over.

 

Though she has been a complete failure in eastern Uttar Pradesh and even her brother lost his seat in Amethi but this is true that she has been able to generate hope in the party workers in the eastern Uttar Pradesh as for them she appears to be more balanced, more articulate, better communicator and with better body language. She being a woman is another advantage for her. Her speeches are small and to the point without any goof ups. She is taking on the BJP on twitter and posing some difficult questions. The task is definitely arduous before her but if Rahul does not accept the challenge, she could be a safe bet for the Congress not only to keep the flocks together but also managing to regain its lost glory.

(By Vinod Kumar Shukla)

raga-vs-congress:-a-new-chapter-or-a-far-cry

RaGa Vs Congress: A new chapter or a far cry?

By IndianMandarins 04 Jul 2019

The grand old party that Congress has always been somehow now appears to be poised to open a new chapter in its politics. This is what the four-page letter written and released by the party president Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday evening targeting the party’s workers and well wishers has come to indicate. Yet, the question is about the precise nature of the task before the party. And it is obviously to make a break from its past and become a party of future.

 

This is important since Congress has mostly been trapped in its glorious history, emanating from its stellar role in the freedom movement and also through the decades thereafter when its leaders could rebuild the badly ravaged country due to centuries of colonial rule.

 

The tone and tenor of Rahul’s letter brings indications of his intention to clear party stables at its Central and State headquarters and set out the party leaders and hangers-on so that they face the public. This is a stupendous task given the years, nay decades, of inertia, complacency and easy ways that have come to beset the ranks of the party.

 

Through his letter Rahul points to the need of warhorses to put a fight to reclaim and redeem the country from the new and divisive course it is being set on rather than the top-heavy structure that Congress has been becoming in recent years.

 

Thus, Rahul talks of need for “radical transformation” of the party to resurrect institutions that, according to him, are coming under the influence of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh. He tries to present an alternative view of politics away from that of the RSS.

 

Thus, he says in his letter, “Congress Party must radically transform itself. Today the BJP is systematically crushing the voice of the Indian people. It is the duty of the Congress Party to defend these voices. India has never and will never be one voice. It is and always will be a symphony of voices. That is the true essence of Bharat Mata.”

 

Remarkable words though these are the battle cry that Rahul is trying to sound somehow takes the focus more towards society rather than to keep it on politics. And this is going to be no easy route to power since it has to go through the process of reforms for which the Congress does not seem to have a programme at least right now.

 

Rahul talks more about renunciation to put the party and its cadre in a selfless service mode than its ranks usual desire for power and influence. He says, “It is a habit in India that the powerful cling to power, no one sacrifices power. But we will not defeat our opponents without sacrificing the desire for power and fighting a deeper ideological battle.”

 

Thus, the task that Rahul has marked for Congresspersons looks to be a tall order given their habitual reluctance to put themselves to hard work and their overdependence on party’s top leadership. This is how Rahul also justifies his decision to relinquish the highest post of the party. So post-Rahul Congress ranks will have to confront and grapple with reality, if they want to remain with the party. This is so despite the fact that the bulk of Congressmen have been insisting upon Rahul to relent and continue in his present position and thereby keep their zones of cool comfort unscathed.

(By Abid Shah)

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