DELHI ASSEMBLY POLLS: WHERE CONGRESS CAN PITCH IN

THE QUESTIONS

1. Can Congress expect the intervening one year will help it recover some lost ground expecting the time may abate the feeling of anger against the Congress led previous union government?

2. Would the party be able to draw mileage from ‘AAP breaching the trust of Delhi voters by deserting the Delhi government in just 49 days’ to increase its tally?

3. Even if the seven months of Narendra Modi led NDA government have performed exceedingly well on the foreign policy front, the government has nothing much to talk about positive changes back home beyond declaring some major policy changes, policy announcements and structural changes. There is some time before the nation would be able to realize the impact of these changes and thus their scope and scale. Would Congress be able to open a window of opportunity for itself here?

4. Everyone is writing Congress off. Analysts are predicting it to be a Congress Vs AAP contest this time. Can Congress leverage this position of ‘hopelessness’ around it to concentrate on ground work? After all, from a historic low, any gains, especially in Delhi, the national capital of India, would be morally boosting for the party?

5. Congress has chosen Ajay Maken, the senior Congress and former union minister, as its campaign head for the upcoming assembly polls. Would Maken be able to make any difference for Congress? As a minister and as Congress spokesperson and media cell in charge, he failed to leave any impact. The scene of Rahul Gandhi intervening in a press conference being addressed by Maken justifying the government ordinance on convicted lawmakers saying the ordinance was ‘a complete nonsense’ is still fresh in our memories.

6. Ajay Maken and Shiela Dikshit were seen as political rivals in Congress politics. Now, even the staunchest of Sheila Dikshit’s critics feel difficulty in rubbishing the fact that Delhi witnessed significant development under her three terms. Sheila Dikshit has welcomed the Congress move of choosing Maken. Would Maken be able to put aside differences building on the work done by Sheila Dikshit giving her thus the credit?

7. Ajay Maken was appointed on the day the Delhi assembly polls 2015 were announced. Some pre-poll surveys on the same day projected even more fall for the party, from its all time low of 2013 assembly polls. Though Congress won two seats in the Delhi Cantonment Board polls on the day, such small scale electoral exercises can never be the criteria to think about legislative assembly polls. Will Congress, away from making empty rhetoric, be able to take cues from the past year and from such pre-poll projections to fine tune its strategy including its chief-ministerial name and candidates to mount a credible challenge to other parties in the fray?

8. Moreover, will Congress be able to recalibrate its aim based on the reality of prevailing circumstances to concentrate its efforts on maximizing the winning ratio, even if in a modest range, a reality for the Congress of the day?

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey–https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/