During late evening hours, the day before yesterday strange yet interesting news came out from the Gujarat Congress. The news was that the National Working President of the Congress, Sonia Gandhi has appointed not one, not two but seven new working presidents for Gujarat. These seven new working presidents are Lalit Kagthara, Jignesh Mewani, Rutvik Makwana, Ambrish Der, Himmatsinh Patel, Kadir Pirzada, and Indravijaysinh Gohil.
Other than these appointments there were a few observers also appointed by Sonia Gandhi and they are Shale Mohammad and Indrajeet Singh Gurjar for Kutchh, Ashok Chandana for Banaskantha, Udaylal Anjana for Mehsana, Nitin Raut for Valsad.
The first impression coming from these new appointments is that the Gujarat Congress is preparing for the upcoming Gujarat assembly elections in November-December. But is it like that? We all know that for the last many years Congress house in Gujarat is in a total mess. After Patidar Anamat Andolan when Hardik Patel became the hero he was hurriedly inducted into the party and later he was appointed as the working president for Gujarat superseding so many senior Gujarat Congress leaders.
But after some time Hardik Patel started feeling that despite being the working president of the Congress in Gujarat he has been ignored by the party while taking major and important decisions, hence just a few months back he left the Congress and joined the BJP. Maybe this decision of Hardik has given a huge relief to the senior Congress leaders of Gujarat. The reason behind this logic is that they have been denied the top post for a newcomer Hardik Patel and now that Hardik has left the party, they will have a new hope to grab that position with both hands.
But the decision we are talking about today must have given these people another major jolt because in this list there is a good mixture of new and old, but those who had problems with Hardik Patel may find problems with Jignesh Mewani’s name as well. Jignesh Mewani along with Hardik Patel and Alpesh Thakore came on to the political horizon of Gujarat just five to six years back only.
Congress supported Mewani for the Vadgam assembly seat and he won the seat as well. But later he unofficially joined Congress, but because he doesn’t have to lose his Gujarat assembly membership he hasn’t announced his affiliation with Congress in public. But like Hardik, Jignesh is also a new leader. Apart from him, the names in the list given above are part of many such lists Congress has announced for Gujarat time and again in the past.
So, the question is, whether we should consider that the latest move by Sonia Gandhi means that the Gujarat Congress is now preparing for the assembly elections or it is the same old policy of keeping everyone happy by offering one post or the other just before the elections have arrived? After the last Loksabha elections, when the decision on whether to accept the resignations of the Pradesh Congress President and Leader of Opposition in Gujarat assembly lingered for almost a year and a half, suddenly appointing not one, not two but seven working presidents is a decision to amuse everyone for sure.
Secondly, just like Hardik Patel, who was the only working president back then, was complaining of being ignored, what jobs these seven new working presidents will be given that the entire Gujarat Congress is not able to do is also a question coming to our minds. Isn’t it possible that one or two of these seven new working presidents will not be ignored?
If that happens then what is the guarantee that these two angry and frustrated people will not leave the Congress sighting the same reason Hardik Patel gave just a few months back? Or is this decision taken to keep the senior Congress leaders of Gujarat calm so that at least till assembly elections have arrived, there is no problem creation, at least on the surface?
Being from Gujarat I have witnessed that for at least two decades, whenever there is a big election nears the Gujarat Congress puts up a good makeup on the necessary structural needs, but never thinks about, or puts its act together on the strategy that can win them an election and thus at the end of the day it loses the election pretty badly. I am afraid that appointing seven working presidents in Gujarat is just like another act of makeup and not a plan that will help Congress to win big in the Gujarat assembly elections of 2022.
Isn’t it obvious that just like the national level where Congress is not willing to trust new faces for giving responsibilities, Gujarat can be no different. Jignesh Mewani indeed is a new and fresh face for Congress, but he is the only one who got featured in this list, and the rest are the same old names. On the other side, the Gujarat BJP’s president CR Patil is already making visits to all the districts of Gujarat one after the other and meeting his cadre. Not only that Prime Minister Narendra Modi is also visiting the state every month at least twice.
Gujarat BJP is already in the election mode, but Congress is busy in deciding what is good for them, and the way this decision process is going, one would feel that it will not give them the results it is expecting during the November-December elections.
9th July 2022, Saturday