Dr B Thomas (Special Correspondent)
The Congress Party weakening ties of relevance to the idea of India that contemporary times resonate with can be attributed to several reasons and the one that has made several rounds around the block has been its losing touch with its grassroots-level party workers.
Why this is something that needs to be adequately addressed in the public discourse because these newer “developments” is more than the Congress Party’s traditional dynasty politics.
This is certainly an “old school”phenomenon for them.The issue is: that not only has its tapering leadership opportunities closed doors to many able politicians’careers,but it has also rendered Congress’s preoccupied stance with the nepotism game in the form of an existence that is doubly away from reality.
Meanwhile,news from all over the country that ground-level workers have been raising voices concerning the absent presence of the leaders in events that require the senior party leaders to back them up has been circling for quite some time.
Instances Wherein Congress Party Workers Felt Alienated From the Party Proper That Continues to Burn the Candle From Both the End for the Congress Party.
Grassroots research studies have recently surfaced that Congress party workers have been procedurally neglected from the core meetings of the party across various levels.
What can strike as a matter of serious concern is that the senior leaders of the Congress Party continue to disconnect from the ground reality scheme of things and are not taking the necessary time and effort to ensure that party objectives, be they short-term or long-term,are not being efficiently communicated.
Such a repetitive pattern of neglecting attitude has been irksome to party workers across the country.
Recent ground reports suggest that many party workers allege Congress’s negligence towards party workers as the primary reason behind the career failure of former veteran Congress senior leaders such as SM Krishna and Siddaramaiah. Many even speculate that AK Antony avoided conducting joint meetings and paying heed to the ground-level politics and the general psyche of ordinary men.
Similar news has been making rounds for quite some time.Reports from Jammu from last year accredits a decline of democratic practices within the party in choosing the ideal candidate for the Jammu Municipal Corporation elections.
Dynasty politics have been persuading congress leaders at levels across the vertical hierarchy of power and many deserving candidates are being denied the party ticket,Gaurav Kapoor (a party leader) from Jammu alleges.
Furthermore, observations such as these are not only airing the news media from the party workers’ side alone.
Many congress leaders that operate at the state level and locally have been reinstating the facts. For instance,Sanjay Nirupam who is the former President of the Mumbai Regional Congress Committee had unequivocally raised such concerns by pointing out how the Congress Party has turned their backs on the plethora of feedback from the ground reality.
He was miffed by the party’s sidelining attitude throughout the four years that he had served as the President of MRCC.
All criticisms against the NDA government fall short when it comes to leadership management at the regional and state levels.
BJP has perfected the art of dissemination of information concerning the core values and agenda that the party identifies with.
Furthermore,the feedback loop of information is immediately accommodated and resolved and every household from metropolitan cities to rural areas is acquainted and aware of the party politics and agenda.
However,the Congress Party lacks the means to inspire grassroots workers.
The Need for Systemic Reforms and Decentralised Approach to Power It won’t be entirely justified to declare that the Congress Party didn’t take concerted efforts to bring systemic changes concerning the current issue at hand.
Rahul Gandhi,the Prime Ministerial candidate from the Congress Party and former President of the Indian National Congress from 2017 to 2019, has conducted several party meetings with party leaders to reinforce the purpose of the political party in a more active spirit.
One major takeaway from such meetings involved the party leaders providing the nuanced undertakings of the meetings to state leaders and regional leaders.
However,to arrest the shaky grounds on which the party stands currently,the party leaders must be able to come up with more creative ways to increase the party’s outreach to the public and regain the trust with the credible agenda of the Hindu community across urban and rural centres.
Many grassroots workers are undoubtedly having second doubts about the secularism trajectory of the party.
So much so that most of them feel that the extent of the said trope has been stretched to such degrees that the public views that the party advocates and favours minority politics.
A serious degree of reform and a change in perception to steer clear of such toxic public perspectives needs to be addressed.
In history time and again,there are several instances wherein the unwavering support of the party workers has caused the failure of sabotaging strategies of within-party rivalry.
For example,SD Somasundaram’s multiple efforts to dispirit Jayalalitha’s credibility when she was entrusted with AIADMK propaganda secretary amounted to zilch because of the support of the district secretaries and party workers.
Furthermore,such examples of exemplary party workers’support are often revered that accounted for Mamta Banerjee’s party’s landslide win in the Assembly Election in 2021.
The public needs some convincing and the only way the party can achieve this is by entrusting and convincing the base workers in the first place.
The party should be aligned with the ground realities and ensure that such a nuanced understanding of the party politics needs to be percolated into the foundation of workers that are carrying the message of the party forward to the general public.
The en bloc shift of the Hindu majority community who were the traditional voters of the INC requires the party to critically analyse the meta-game of the NDA government.
Regarding the issue of the party workers, Congress needs to cut down to brass stacks and find a more legit results-driven approach to resolve a core issue such as this.
A unique blend of traditional leaders of the Congress Party with the welcoming youth trend that the party is currently invested in can be just the solution.
The key is to make their foundation strong and leverage power by adopting a decentralised attitude towards power might just do the trick for the Congress Party.