Congress is shrinking. It is a fact. If it can’t change its affairs now, then when?

The poor performance of Congress party in the BMC elections not just reflect its shrinking political space in India’s financial capital but also across the country.

The opposition party congratulated the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi for their victory in UP and Uttarakhand, highlighted its own gains in Punjab and Goa and said it will introspect on its performance.(PTI)

The poor performance of Congress party in the BMC elections not just reflect its shrinking political space in India’s financial capital but also across the country. What is more surprising is the fact that the party led by president Sonia Gandhi appears to have no clue as to how to manage Congress affairs, especially in places beyond Delhi.

Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi, who has gambled all his might in the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections, has also been a disappointment in this regard. The grand old party is shrinking. And this is a fact — from Maharashtra to Odisha to Jammu and Kashmir to the North-Eastern states of the country. The party’s chances in UP depend entirely on the personal appeal of Samajwadi president Akhilesh Yadav.

In Mumbai, the BMC polls result of the Congress reflects the poor state of affairs within the party. It could win only 31 seats out of 227 in BMC, which was much lower than its 2012 tally of 52. The party’s performance in other municipal corporations like Thane, Pune, Nagpur, Nashik and Pimpri Chinchwad was also nothing worth mentioning.

Despite the poor result, the infighting among Congress leaders is surprising. The party is represented by Sanjay Nirupam, who was in news a few months ago for making controversial remarks against the Surgical Strikes carried out by Indian Army on terror camps in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir on September 29 last year. Such has been Nirupam’s aura that he failed to take his party leaders along in the run up to the BMC polls. Like a cribbing captain, no surprise Nirupam accepted defeat much before the announcement of the results and put the entire blame on “key party leaders”.

Also read: BMC Election Results 2017 Live Updates: Shiv Sena leads on 57 seats, BJP ahead on 32; Congress leading on 10

On Wednesday, Nirupam had said that “key party leaders” acted against him and didn’t fight against the rivals. He was indirectly pointing fingers to senior leaders like Gurudas Kamat, who had openly attacked Nirupam’s “negative attitude”. Former Union minister Kamat campaigned only for a few candidates, not the entire party. Several other Congress leaders like former Maharashtra CM Narayan Rane and Milind Deora too refused to walk hand in hand with Nirupam.

Another Congress leader from the Mumbai, Milind Deora even mocked the people of the city for voting in favour of Sena and BJP. “Conclusion one can draw from BMC election results is that Mumbaikars seem content living with potholes, flooding, malaria & water tankers,” Deora Tweeted.

Considering the speed at which Congress has lost political space to regional groups and national rival BJP in the last 2-3 years, it won’t be surprising if the party becomes irrelevant in the coming years. It needs to correct its game, if not now then when!


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