Congress which has considered itself as a natural party of governance till a few years ago is for serious introspection if the statement of the some of the leaders is to be believed. After serious drubbing it has got from UP and Uttarakhand and the pathetic management of available situation in its favour in Goa and Manipur, many leaders have come in the open to have broad based alliance with all parties which oppose BJP. After the UP shock it is learnt that the party has come to the conclusion that had all the anti BJP parties came together the result in UP would have been different.
The BJP did not get a very strong vote share in recent state elections whereas Congress and its allies got a good vote share despite losing the polls,” he told reporters.“Everything possible will be done to counter the BJP. The Congress and its allies will pose a formidable challenge to BJP in next general electionsC P Joshi, Congress leader
In Uttarpradesh where BJP got four third majority could garner 39.7% votes. SP 21.8% and the Congress 6.2%. This means that combined vote share of the three non-BJP parties adds up to 50.2%. After the result were announced even some of the Congress leaders have started expressing doubts about the efficiency of Rahul Gandhi. Former minister Kishore Chandra Deo come out in the open saying that Rahul Gandhi should get rid of the sycophants if he has to ‘survive’. Another minister in the UPA cabinet Ashwini Kumar the party should candidly accept that mistakes have been made and show willingness to atone for them — “wherever the responsibility lies”. Mani Shanker Aiyer in an article published in NDTV suggested the Congress leadership to learn from the 2004 experience when the Sonia Gandhi cobbled together a grand alliance which unseated NDA from power. C P Joshi was responding to the suggestion of Mani Shanker Aiyer on the need to have a grand alliance against BJP.
He said “Only a fool will say that Prime Minister Narendra Modi can be defeated single-handedly,” he said. But Rahul Gandhi who has gone to United States to bring his mother Sonia Gandhi who went for medical check up back, has not said anything about this.
But even as serious thinking is underway in Congress about the need to have a grand alliance against the BJP, its major ally Janata Dal has said in order to defeat Modi, Nitish Should be made as the leader of the formation.” Nitish Kumar should be the leader of the grand alliance, only then will it be possible to defeat the BJP,” party leader Sanjay Singh said.
CPI (M), Which stressed on the need to have a common minimum programme in order to have a grand alliance. Party politburo member Prakash Karat in an article insisted that a common minimum programme to counter neo liberalism has to be the basic policy of the grand alliance.
Despite the drubbing it has received, BSP supremo Mayawati has not said any thing about her party’s future plans. Ever since the aborted friendship she had with SP in 1993 , Mayawati has considered the later as her main enemy. Her policy has been to go it alone in the polls. Would she change her policy after three consecutive defeat is the question to which only Mayawati can answer. Another important hurdle that comes in the way of grand alliance is from West Bengal. Despite their rhetoric on the need to defeat Modi and BJP, the possibility of CPI (M) mending fences with Trinamool Congress is very little. And in Bengal the left party is struggling hard to remain as the main opposition.
Though the Congress leadership may try to forge alliance with as many parties as they could, the initial reaction to this move reflects the difficult terrain it will have to tread in order to achieve this. Intransigent ideological position by some and the individualistic approaches of many other leaders makes the problems before the Congress more difficult.