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Congress: On Thorny Path- Another "Mr. Clean"
By Tanveer Jafri
Contributing Writer
Rahul Gandhi with his mother and Congress President Sonia Gandhi

In India, Rahul Gandhi's name is centre of attraction, these days. He is 37 years youth, son of the former Indian Prime Minister, Bharat Ratn late Mr. Rajiv Gandhi. Not only from India but all the political analysts of the world see this young politician with adorable eyes. Pundit Moti Lal Nehru played a leading role in the independence struggle of India. After that & after independence, his son the first Prime Minister of the country, Pundit Jawaharlal Nehru & after Pundit Nehru, his only daughter, Indira Priyadarshani Gandhi, who was serving the country even at the time of her death. After that Mr. Rajiv Gandhi, who served the nation many years & left impressions as Mr. Clean & now the fifth in this order is Rajiv's son Rahul Gandhi.

Undoubtedly, Nehru-Gandhi family has been controlling the central power of India for most of the time since independence. Even now it is so & such a control has never been witnessed from any other political family in the country. The people like me who have studied about the Nehru-Gandhi family & have got a chance to live near them, they are very well aware of the sacrifices made by this family. Pundit Moti Lal Nehru & Pundit Jawaharlal Nehru went to jail, many a time for the freedom of the country. They were even tortured there. After independence, Pundit Nehru served the country as a first & successful Prime Minister for about 16 years. During his grand rule, Pundit Nehru did wonderful jobs to make the country self dependent & put it on the path of progress. The people of India will remain grateful to Pundit Nehru forever. After that Lal Bahadur Shastri had a good but short lived rule. After that, again, Smt. Indira Gandhi, the only daughter of Pundit Nehru took the reigns of rule in her hands. This daring & fearless woman sacrificed her life for the unity & oneness of the country & raised the name of India to the sky. After the assassination of Indiraji in 1984, Rajiv Gandhi won the election by majority of votes & was chosen as the Prime Minister. Rajiv Gandhi put such impression before the public & the media that people began to say him "Mr. Clean." And at last this shining star Mr. Clean, a member of Nehru-Gandhi family was laid down by the active terrorist organization, LITTE, of Sri Lanka in 1991.

Nehru Gandhi family got a great shock after the death of Rajiv Gandhi. Once, it was felt that now this family will not be able to remain supreme in Indian politics. This situation remained for many years. Specially till the time, late Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi's wife Sonia Gandhi didn't accepted the request of the congress leaders & workers to take part in politics. But in reality, it was too late to handle the steering of the Congress party. The Congress that ruled the heart of the countrymen & the country had lost its ground before the time when Sonia Gandhi became active in politics. The selfish & self opinionated leaders who were hungry for the power now began to think that perhaps it was not the fate of the Congress to get power again. On the other hand, the opposition also used foul or fair means to keep Congress away from the power. These means were shameful & immoral. For example, the ritualistically married wife of Rajiv Gandhi was downgraded by calling her "a foreigner" & so she can't be trusted. To the extent, in the general election of 2004, when Congress parliamentary board elected her as its leader & nominated her as the Prime Minister, the opposition parties specially Bhartiya Janta Party opposed it. Some other so called patriot leaders also opposed Sonia by such movement. With her farsighted thought & sacrifice, Sonia Gandhi refused to take charge as the Prime Minister of India. By doing so, she increased her grandeur & proposed the name of Dr. Manmohan Singh who is a great economist & undoubtedly an honest man with clean impressions.

For the last two decades, India is being ruled by the alliance of parties. As the Congress President, Sonia Gandhi has enabled the Congress to achieve a position that it can be seen representing the Indians as the greatest party in Indian Parliament. But to make the government with majority is not easy at present or in near future. But it is also true that the Congress with its wide team of devoted Congressmen is trying to follow the policy so that Congress may come in power with its full majority of members. The active participation in politics of Rahul Gandhi, the son of Rajiv Gandhi & Sonia Gandhi, his contesting of election in 2004 from Amethi for the Lok Sabha & winning from the seat & a few days back, the appointment of Rahul as General Secretary of All India Congress Committee are sufficient to make one understand that Nehru-Gandhi family with another Mr. Clean is ready to devote itself for the progress of the Congress & for the service of the nation. In this series the party high command has also given him a leading role to perform in Uttar Pradesh, the largest state of India.

The Congress Party which calls for the unity & oneness of the country from Kashmir to Kanyakumari & states its philosophy of communal harmony will get something solid in future, from Rahul Gandhi or not, can't be predicted. But it is clear that Congress has got an impression "Mr. Clean" as of Rajiv Gandhi. Now the need stands that Congress leaders should work hard to strengthen its organization just as the other parties are doing. By strengthening the organization, some parties have come on the first line equal to Congress.

Last days, in the Talkatora Stadium in New Delhi, Congress President Sonia Gandhi made it clear that she or Rahul doesn't have a magic rod. It is a reality also. May be Sonia Gandhi or Rahul Gandhi, these leaders can gather lakhs of people in the meetings, that because of their popularity, glamour or attraction. But on the Election Day, the workers have to bring the people out of their homes to the polling station. This is to be done by the active workers of the Congress. Only Congress workers will have to reply the opposition propaganda at the corners of the streets & in Panchayats. It depends on the local leaders of the Congress organization to prepare a team of devoted & honest workers who can make use of the impression of another "Mr. Clean."

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Mr.Tanveer Jafri, who serves as contributing writer for The Seoul Times, is a noted columnist in India. He writes on a variety of issues including world peace, anti-terrorism, and national & international politics for numerous news dailies and portals in India. As a devoted social activist he is a member of Haryana Sahitya Academy & Haryana Urdu Academy.






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