Jayanthi Natrajan: Crying Foul for Political Gains?

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While many seem to be sympathizing with Jayanthi Natrajan for the “mental agony” she claims to have endured, as a result of the vilification and humiliation she was subjected to in the media ever since her resignation in December 2013, many in the Congress are accusing her of political opportunism.

Ever since the news of Natrajan quitting the Congress party has broken out, there has been speculation that she too, like many of her former party members, could join the BJP. There have been reports suggesting that Jayanthi Natrajan did in fact meet BJP Party President, Amit Shah, during the Winter Session of the Parliament.

In this atmosphere of speculations, allegations and counter-allegations, little can be said with any degree of certainty. Here are five questions that everyone seems to be asking in the face of Jayanthi Natrajan’s explosive revelations:

  1. Congress Party in Shambles? After the 2014 general elections, many political observers predicted the political demise of the Congress party. Now, with senior members of the Congress party leveling serious allegations against the party leadership and alluding to the absence of any democracy within the party, should such predictions that were until recently regarded glib, be taken more seriously? Has the foundation of the Congress party been shaken indelibly? And is it really the onset of a much larger revolt against Rahul Gandhi?
  2. Crying foul for Political Gains? The Congress party is unarguably at its lowest. Far from winning elections, it is not even being considered a serious political competitor in many state elections. In such a situation, one cannot help but question the credibility of those crying foul and absconding from the party. Political opportunism is an inevitable by-product of any democracy. Is what we are currently witnessing a result of the same?

 

  1. Jayanthi Natrajan equally at fault? While Natrajan accuses Rahul Gandhi of interference in serious matters of the government even as he did not hold any position in the government, should she not be blamed equally for remaining silent as long as she enjoyed power in the government and the party? Why did she speak out only after she ceased to enjoy the political camaraderie with the party leadership? Why, as she herself has said, did she keep honoring Rahul baba’s “requests”?
  2. No ideological grounding? If Jayanthi Natrajan does in fact choose to join the BJP, what does it say about the ideological affiliations of the politicians of our country? The Indian National Congress and the Bhartiya Janata Party have not simply been arch rivals in the modern political history of India; they have been at ideological loggerheads with one another over key political, economic and social issues. If members of either party leave one to join another, what is the electorate to make of this political and ideological oscillation? Is it then true that, in actuality, the politicians of our country have no ideological standing, and that the ideologies they claim to stand by are no more than political charades to seek membership into political parties and mislead the voters?

Sanya Dhingra

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