Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Recoding INC: Open Letter to Rahul Gandhi

Dear Rahul Gandhi,

HT headlines that read ‘Rahul Gandhi gets ready for rediscovery of India’ indeed prompted me to write an open letter to you. After many such ‘rediscovery of India’ trips that you have undertaken it has been nothing more than a mockery of the legacy of ‘Discovery of India’.

Social Media, Main Stream, Voters, Panelist on debates, Right-wingers, Political opponents all are feasting on INC Leadership and particularly you, and somehow you choose ‘rediscovery of India’ path!

INC its staring at the Leadership for direction and all you plan to do is an ‘Incredible’ India tourism campaign? Don’t be fooled when some of the ‘bright stars’ in the party claim that if Indira could do it so can Rahul, even though I believe you have many qualities of Indira and she has been your inspiration, it’s fair to say that you are NO Indira and 1970's India is not 2014 India.

I am not interested in giving my views on why INC ended up with 44 MP, just 6 less than the maximum WhatsApp group count, nor I am willing to blame UPA-2 for what it did or did not do. Because, no one drives a car just staring at the rear view mirror, a rear view mirror is only to learn from the past and be aware of what is behind you. It’s time to look ahead, make a fresh start, but sadly there seems to be no concrete efforts made in that direction.

It’s given that you will be under the worst scrutiny ever, both internally and externally and it’s not going to get any better for you for a long time. The Leaders in INC are having a ‘party’ literally, pouncing, scratching and prowling at each other leaving the workers in a state of shock or worst running for cover.

Do not forget, over 10.7 crore people voted for INC, its time INC kept its commitment to these people who stood by the party even when it was staring at a brutal loss. Make a shift, ask these 10.7 crore people why they voted for INC, may be their conviction can help you steer INC in the right direction and help to ‘Recode’ INC.

Buzz is that there will more emphasis on PR, Communication, SM, Media interactions etc etc, yes all these can be achieved by bringing in professionals to manage it, ok good, but is that all one needs to do? No, INC has to bring back its sympathizers, believers, liberals, anti-right-wingers, traditional supporters, the disillusioned and more importantly women back into its fold.

Yes democratization of IYC and NSUI is something you should be proud of, but are they heading in the right direction? May not be, IYC and NSUI that should have been an army of political activist, free thinkers, idealist, young minds who feel the pulse of young India and who represent the ideology of INC, sadly they reflect the same shade of the larger organization which you are finding difficult to change.

INC biggest supporters were the women, for whom Indira Gandhi has been an inspiration, but the organization has failed them completely. Local leadership across states has systematically decimated the women leaders and workers. It’s unimaginable how a party headed by an inspiring woman like Sonia Gandhi has no credible and strong line of women leaders, if this is not failure what else can it be?

I too come from a family of political activist and hardcore INC supporters, all my life I have seen elections, where working professionals used to take leave from work and campaign selflessly for INC in every election. Where did these professionals go? What made these professionals go away, many may not have changed their ideology but they have simply distanced themselves from the local leadership. In corporate world we say that people do not quit organization, they quit managers, and it is not different from what happened to these professionals who were the greatest supporters of INC.

I am emphasizing again and again on the local leadership and grassroots level, because whoever becomes the President of INC nothing will change unless the foundation is ‘Recoded’. There is an urgency to move from mere tokenism to activism, money to mechanism and to bring back idealism into the organization. It can only happen if every member in INC is empowered to question and correct the leadership at all levels without being politically banished.

India has changed and INC can’t keep on romancing history, but there are many things that are eternal, which INC stood for - free thinking, idealism, conviction, liberal view, social justice, equality and fearlessness, and Recoding INC will be incomplete without this.

My nasty comments on you are not an indication of disbelief in your capabilities, recently when someone asked if your sister is a better bet for INC, I firmly said with a bloody nose, battered and bruised image RG is more equipped to lead INC. I am indeed a supporter of your Leadership; I strongly believe you are Sincere, Honest and someone who has the Heart in the right place.

As they say it’s the Generals who win the war through Strategy-Delegation-Deployment. Stop applying lipstick on pigs; bring in the Generals who can deliver, who are committed to the ideology of INC.

Don’t wait for political opponents and parties to make mistakes, winning a ‘For’ vote is more reassuring than winning an ‘Against’ vote. A golden opportunity has presented itself, it’s the 125 birth anniversary year of the first Prime Minister of our Nation there cannot be a better day to start Recoding INC. Indeed there can be no greater tribute to Pandit Nehru than restoring INC as a party of and for every Indian.

Quoting for an old advertisement that I think is apt for Recoding INCTo change the way you Look, change the way you Cook’.

Kavitha Reddy