Congress Manifesto, Old Wine in New (Rattled) Bottles

P.L Khushu

A divided congress has again not come up to the expectations of the people of India through its new election manifesto which is always a pointer in regard to the expected development of the country once a political party seeks to come to power to rule the country with a popular mandate of the people as a whole. But a popular mandate from the people of the country is possible only on overall performance of a political party, along with its pledge to ensure welfare and wellbeing of the electorate with positive hopes of new avenues of development in all the facets of development needed for the country as a whole on scientific patterns of growth and expansion.
In broader capping the dilemma of the Congress party is not that of winning the elections to rule, but to contest the elections itself. Congress is short of durable and prudent faces for the elections to contest. The veterans of this party have since been shown the door by the dynastic rulers of this party. The dynasty rulers of this party have so far been helplessly trying to make the present congress party a dynasty affair, hoping to get this country ruled by its off shoot prince. But the prince is not able to come to the expectations of a prudent and an experienced leader with national image and recognition. This is ultimately heading almost to the extinction of this age old national political party which has its base in the birth of this independent India.
The election manifesto of the congress party is more linked to the criticism and hate for the present ruling political party the NDA, rather than carrying any hope and sign of positive eagerness to rule this country again for the overall welfare of the people of the country with a compassionate secular idealism. There is nothing marked or eventful to a common eye which may call this manifesto as a ray of better hope for the people of India, as compared to the present gigantic development of India and its people on all the fronts of development and plans of inertia.
Congress and its dynastic preemptors are forgetting that, India’s economy achieved a historic milestone recently, when its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) crossed the $4 trillion-mark in nominal terms for the first time ever, according to several media reports. This shows that India has achieved a strong mile stone by crossing $4 trillion-mark in DGP, making it a strong moment for India’s presence in the global presence apart from gaining an international pride. Such a situation for India has a direct link with the traumatic leadership of our Prime Minister Modi, who has taken India to unprecedented heights. It is said and speculated that it will take just two years more for India to become the third largest economy in the world. India’s economy boasts diversity and swift growth, fuelled by key sectors such as information technology, services, agriculture, and manufacturing. The nation capitalizes on its broad domestic market, a youthful and technologically adept labor force and an expanding middle class. Modi is probably the first Indian prime minister to carve the technology so much for his welfare programmes for India. His government’s Unified Payment Interface (UPI) has revolutionized India’s economy by facilitating digital payments even in villages.
Direct Benefits Transfer (DBT) was another revolutionary scheme that the Modi government utilized for financial inclusion of India’s masses. In the 1980s, then PM Rajiv Gandhi had said that out of every rupee sent by the Centre government, only 15 paise reaches the poor. The DBT has changed that. With the help of the (Jan Dhan + Aadhar + Mobile) trinity, the Modi government achieved the feat of transferring subsidies directly to the people through their bank accounts. Direct transfer of subsidies reduced leakages and delays while bringing transparency and accountability to the process, thus saving the 85 paise that used to go missing from a rupee. Financial inclusion not only helped with disbursal of benefits, but also increased India’s market size and financial inclusion. India saved $27 billion in key central government schemes through DBT as it is swift and has eliminated corruption, as per the government reports. This nearly almost a decade-long period of Modi governments rule has changed India’s economy in definite ways, when Modi and his government took decision after decision that made deep, lasting impacts on the economy of this country. India’s technology – based governance, adopted by Modi and his government, is now admired the world over. India has developed a world-class digital public infrastructure to support its sustainable development goals and with its journey upwards in this regard, making it lessons for other countries embarking on their own digital transformation. “International Monetary Fund has said in a working paper recently, that the digitalization in India, has supported formalization of India’s economy and Aadhaar has helped in the direct transfer of payments to beneficiaries while reducing leakages”. ” India’s growth continues to be resilient despite some signs of moderation in growth, says the World Bank in its latest India Development Update, the World Bank India’s biannual flagship publication”. “The Update notes that although significant challenges remain in the global environment, India was one of the fastest growing economies in the world. The overall growth remains robust and is estimated to be 6.9 percent for the full year with real GDP growing 7.7 percent year-on-year during the first three quarters of fiscal year 2022/23. There were some signs of moderation in the second half of FY 22/23. Growth was underpinned by strong investment activity bolstered by the government’s apex push and buoyant private consumption, particularly among higher income earners. Inflation remained high, averaging around 6.7 percent in FY22/23, but the current-account deficit narrowed in Q3, on the back of strong growth in service exports and easing global commodity prices. This is a micro description of the development of India’s growth, when there are so many other sectors, when a sky rise developments have taken place.
There were other multiple reforms taken recourse to by the Modi government for the welfare of the people of India. NDA Government embarking on ushering in game-changing reforms through the use of Jan Dhan, Aadhar and Mobile (JAM), a unique combination of three to implement direct transfer of benefits. This innovative methodology has been able to allow transfer of benefits in a leakage-proof, well-targeted and cashless manner. There have been cut in subsidy leakages but not in subsidy themselves. Swachh Bharat mission was launched, for a clean India which was thought to be the best tribute India could pay to Mahatma Gandhi on his 150 birth anniversary in 2019. Swachh Bharat Mission was launched throughout length and breadth of the country as a national movement. While leading the mass movement for cleanliness, the Prime Minister exhorted people to fulfill Mahatma Gandhi’s dream of a clean and hygienic India. NDA Government gave massive push to education & skill development Various unique measures were taken to augment the quality and reach of education. A fully IT based Financial Aid Authority to administer & monitor all education loans and scholarships through Pradhan Mantri Vidyalakshmi Karyakram, was introduced for this purpose .
Probably Congress is trying to turn a Nelson’s Eye to all such herculean achievements of Modi and his team, while feeling frustrated about their future under such circumstances before the electorate. Congress feels that they will be rejected by the people of India in the coming national elections and shall have to rest in oblivion, for their earlier damages to the national polity and economic growth of India.
Congress party made all the efforts to make a parallel body to combat Modi in the formation of I.N.D.I. Alliance, which is looking like a fragmented body and can be compared through its nomenclature as a lead to broken I.N.D.IA, that is India with dots and doubts. This I.N.D.I. Alliance has fallen under its own weight due to constant infighting between its forged partners. They could not forge a unified front against Modi and NDA, as most of its constituents are dynasty based political parties, aspiring to continue with their aspirations to rule with alleged ulterior motives of selfish interests. Most of its allies have already abandoned it. Congress has been caught between the devil and the deep sea with this alliance.
Dreaming to come to power to rule the country again by the congress party appears a myth now, when it is almost asking for the Moon by the congress party, due to various misconceived factors which has left the congress party in shambles for its own sins of the past, by ruling this country on dynastic and caste basis. The basic cause for the unfortunate extinction of the congress party from the national scenario is its dynastic base, when the dynastic bent of mind to get this country ruled through the dynasty only has made this political party worst than a small regional party. It is pitiable to visualize that this grand old political party of Nehru and Patel is now gasping for its political survival on the election front by seeking shelter for its seat sharing to contest the elections with various small and insignificant political parties. Looking to the results there of this political party is at places now at the tail end of its level of political stature with some other political parties which have even refused to accommodate it on its terms of reference. Congress party has already eaten a humble pie at all such places and occasions, when it has brazenly compromised its principles and even the dictates of its political manifestoes for its survival and existence.
Under utter frustration Congress manifesto features Rahul Gandhi’s so called “Naya-Yatra” which is considered by most of the people of India, as a holiday itinerary of the congress party to appease the dynastic crowns by the sycophants who are presently the policy planners for this party to its doom. Once observed keenly the Congress has come up with a manifesto to mislead the voters. It is an irony that Congress is seeking the people’s mandate with the promise to do wonders if voted to power.
Some people are taking a jibe at Congress for naming its manifesto “Nyay Patra”, saying the name itself suggests that the party had done injustice to the country during its 50-60 years of rule. The Congress did not fulfill any of the promises made in its earlier manifestos for Assembly and Lok Sabha elections”. Congress has to first remove the “Anaya” in its own party. Stalwarts of this party have been disowned and made ineffective for dynastic interests, which is very much suicidal for this party at this stage of political scenario of this country.
Who does not know what legacy of economic distress was left over by the UPA government after losing the elections in 2014, which has been made over by the NDA government under the leadership of Modi so far.
The other unfortunate issue, which congress is now embarking upon, is the caste culture. Of late, Congress is now making it a slogan to ask for caste census of sorts to woo the voters. Raising the slogan of “Jitni abadi, utna haq”, one of the present prominent congress leaders, has said that the rights of the people should be proportionate to their numbers and sought a similar caste census at the national level. Other opposition parties have also demanded such a census in other states too at the national level. The BJP has joined the issue with PM Modi criticizing the caste census as a ploy to divide Hindus. Questioning Congress on rights allocation based on population, Modi asked if the political parties want to decrease the rights of religious minorities. But for Modi, poor people are the biggest “abadi” (population), of the country and they have the first right over resources. Welfare of the poor is my aim,” he said.
Congress is spreading another venomous lie across the country saying that once Modi comes back to power with a 400 majority, he will have the constitution amended. Why should Modi amend the constitution and what for? They are deliberately ignoring the sanctity of our constitution which is always subject to the strict eye of the independent legal supremacy of our country.
The right course for the Congress party is to set right its own house in order before coming with election manifestoes for contesting the elections to come to power and rule the country. Why should Modi amend the constitution and what for. They are deliberately
It could be said that the recent election manifesto of the congress party is like “Old wine in new bottles”, but the new bottles are rattled, which fighting and striking against each other. . So this election manifesto of the congress party is like “Old Wine in New Ratteled Bottles”.
(The author is a chartered consultant civil engineer, passionately attached and devoted to his mother land – Jammu & Kashmir).

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