The All India Congress Committee’s ‘course correction’ offer after the party’s electoral debacle was aimed at protecting the leadership against any inhouse attacks and was not part of a belated realisation, feel ‘loyalists’ outside Gandhis’ charmed circle and some change seekers.
“Just see who is now speaking about ‘looking into mistakes’ committed and about ‘doing course correction’. The same leadership, which tried to hound us, isolate us and brand us as anti-party when some of us collectively raised many genuine concerns with the Congress interim president last year and pleaded with the leadership to do a course-correction! For nearly a year, they failed to see any merit in the issues we raised. If we were villains for seeking a course correction then, why is the leadership now offering to do the same now,” asked a senior Congress leader who was one among the 23 who signed on a joint letter to Sonia Gandhi last August.
- West Bengal
- Tamil Nadu
The leadership had since systematically side-lined many change seekers and removed many of them from party posts and campaign assignments, especially in this round of assembly elections. These actions, incidentally, came despite Sonia Gandhi called them for a discussion in December end and promised more deliberations on the issues raised, only to unilaterally disband talks apparently on the advice of Team Rahul/Priyanka.
It is learned that many change seekers held telephonic discussions after the poll results and some of them also received solidarity calls from some hitherto unattached Congress leaders. Many change seekers said for the moment they were preoccupied with the national fight against Covid-19 and would revisit political and organisational matters at the appropriate time.
The AICC too is citing the Covid-19 situation to try and duck many tricky issues, especially about the move of many regional parties to use the Congress meltdown and key victories of Mamata Banerjee and MK Stalin as an occasion to pitch for a front of regional parties to fight BJP. “Sorry, our priorities now are different. The Congress party wants to be on the forefront of fighting Covid-19 and I am sure everybody wants to do that. So, this is the question which should be asked in 2023,” said party spokesperson Pawan Khera, parrying questions about many regional parties working to join hands to take on the Modi government with some even citing Mamata Banerjee as a counter to the PM.