New Delhi: “We have to put up a fight come what may. BJP should not find it easy”. This was Rahul Gandhi at a meeting ahead of results coming in for Karnataka.
Post polling, Congress, in anticipation of a hung Assembly, had its Chief Minister Siddaramaiah declare that he was ready to make way for a Dalit CM if the need so arises.
This was the first hint that Congress was ready to pull a smart one on the BJP.
It’s a far cry from the Rahul Gandhi who had at Jaipur session of Congress called power a “poisoned chalice”. Rahul, till he became president, had maintained that it was more important to stay with principles than be power hungry. Today’s Rahul realises that it is equally important to keep the cadre enthused with results. Also, it is pertinent to remain a critical factor in building up a front against the BJP.
Sonia and Rahul Gandhi got together to decide that these results had thrown up an opportunity to send a message to other opposition parties that Congress had the fighting spirit and that they all would have to come together to take on the BJP.
Congress-JD(S) may or may not form the government in the state, but the opposition certainly has got another ally for the Lok Sabha polls. At a meeting attended by Ahmed Patel and on the phone with Azad and Ashok Gehlot, the Gandhis said we need to give them a fight. Rahul said that BJP cannot offer CM post to JD(S), while we can. And that’s how the ball was set rolling.
Sources say, Congress is prepared for the possibility of BJP forming the government in the state.
Rahul said if they form the government, we will take to the streets. It is hoping that it will help galvanise all opposition parties. In this defeat there could be the chance of a hard to find opposition unity.
Mayawati, who has played the guessing game, tied up with JD(S) and is bound to raise the Dalit card in case JD(S) and Congress are not given the chance to form government. And in this, Congress will join in too to accuse the BJP of being anti-Dalit.
Giving tips silently, but with the strength of a win, was Sonia’s old hand Ahmed Patel. The similarities to the aggressive nail biting race for the Rajya Sabha poll in which Patel fought tooth and nail to secure a win was what was put to use once again.
Once they decided to go ahead and put up a fight, Randeep Surjewala was called in to brief the media. The research team swung into action and one of the strongest defence they quoted was an earlier blog by Arun Jaitely where he had defended the fact why single largest party was not forming the government in Goa.
Rahul ended the meeting by saying we have to reply to the BJP in their style. And hence the new Rahul style. Don’t follow rules. Make new ones. Fight back and show the fire in the belly. For Rahul the fight has just begun.