Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi has questioned why he is being singled out as the natural heir to the Indian National Congress (INC), as dynastic politics is a problem in all political parties in India, as well as in the business circle and entrainment industry; and that is how the entire country has been running. His statement has sparked off debates on all platforms and national news channels. Gandhi had also criticized Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s demonetization and the hastily implemented Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime that he said caused tremendous damage to the Indian economy but was not discussed.
Gandhi said this during a talk - ‘India at 70: Reflections on the Path Forward’, at Berkeley University during his visit to the US. He talked about a range of issues including the Congress’ loss in the 2014 general elections in which his party slid to its lowest tally ever in the Lok Sabha, at the same time declared he is “absolutely ready” to be the party’s prime ministerial candidate for the 2019 general elections.
Strangely, no quarters accepted the bitter truth that post Demonetisation and GST rollout, many small time business establishments have been wiped out, cash-flow has been reduced by over 62 percent, whereas the farming community and the daily wage laborers in India who deal in hard cash were forced to lay off. The worst impact was witnessed in terms of figures showing decline in economic growth that cost India two per cent loss in the GDP.
During the 2014 General Lok Sabha General Election campaigns, Modi promised to generate employment and equip the youths with vocational skills through his flagship programme of Make in India. But due to lack of Resource persons for technical and professional skills, the programme failed to produce employable youth even after three years, which has further increased the figures of unemployment in India.
GDP growth has fallen to 5.7 percent, hitting the 3-year low, which has only affirmed that there are more job losses. At the same time, citizens have been plunged into the pool of debt, which will soon witness a financial breakdown in India, warn the financial experts, if jobs are not generated soon.
Gandhi also accepted that the trade and commerce in India is controlled by only about ten families, which is an extremely dangerous trend as the poor are getting poorer, while the rich are getting richer. Such practices might lead to yet another revolution in the country as witnessed in history by various countries, where being pushed to the edge economically, one had to revolt for the survival.
Rahul also slammed the BJP-led central government over the incidents of mob lynching and cow vigilantism that damaged India’s image. He assured that he understand what violence does, violence against anybody is wrong. Hatred, anger and violence can destroy us; the politics of polarisation is dangerous. He also mentioned how liberal journalists were being shot (referring to Kannada journalist-activist Gauri Lankesh’s murder), adding, these incidents are making millions feel that they have no future in their country.
As Senior Congress leader Shashi Tharoor, who was present in the audience during Gandhi’s speech tweeted: A speech marked by acuity and passion, and a discussion infused with candour and insight.
Yet most of the political parties and national news channel did not highlight on the present crisis the nation are going through, which needs immediate attention before economy breakdown occurs.