Priyanka Gandhi’s “mammoth show of strength in Lucknow has demonstrated Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi’s ability to pull crowd and energise the Congress party cadre.
Her message that she was for a “new brand of politics” has nothing to galvanize the support of any caste group and spur its movement towards the Congress’s fold.
This is the view expressed by Anando Bhakto, Special Correspondent of Frontline. He was on News18 group’s prime time debate on Monday.
While discussing whether her big launch at Lucknow would also fetch votes for her party, and if it did, who will be at loss, Bhakto expressed the opinion that while good oratory and personal charisma, both of which Priyanka possesses, can work as magnet, allegience in election is really the outcome of an economically attractive message.
In a facebook post, Bhakto has rolled out the pointers he had underscored during the prime time TV debate.
Bhakto writes: “Priyanka has said she is here to initiate a new brand of politics, an inclusive one, and has sought the participation of all. But, evidently, the specifics are missing. Her message has nothing to galvanize the support of any caste group and spur its movement towards the Congress’s fold. A message also needs to be followed by pragmatic attempts to build a social coalition. While Priyanka may try to wean away the upper castes, in particular the Brahmins, it’s too late in the day to yeild dividend in the upcoming general election. She would, to an extent, attract the young electorate, of diverse background. And, the good thing is that unlike what the BJP says, this would not be at the expense of the SP and the BSP. The Muslims and Dalits will back the SP-BSP alliance whole heartedly, not just because it is better equipped to defeat the BJP, but because Congress’s overt tilt to majoritarian politics has further distanced them. The votes that Priyanka would pull, would come from the small caste groups, part of the rainbow Hindu coalition that the BJP had stitched in the 2017 election, but failed to keep in good humour, with Thakurs emerging as the primary beneficiary in Yogi government. There is possibility that they would experiment with the grand old party, swelling its current 6.2% vote share to around 10%.”