Defying his word that he was quitting politics, Prashant Kishor may join the Indian National Congress (INC) about two years after he was kicked out of the JD(U). A high-level meeting of the Indian National Congress (INC) was held at the residence of party president Sonia Gandhi this morning to discuss, among other crucial issues the induction of the election strategist and manager to the party.
Analysing the development, senior lawyer and pro-nation political analyst Amitabh Sinha saw Prashant Kishor’s move as similar to that of ex-CPI Kanhaiya Kumar joining the INC. “Kumar had, in fact, stated as much that he was joining the old party as it badly needed leadership and there was a greater scope for him to operate where the son and daughter of Sonia Gandhi have repeatedly failed in getting their party back to a winning streak.”
“Will Prashant Kishor finally play a leadership role to bring the ‘GOP’, as he refers to the INC, back on track,” Sinha asked.
Drawing an interesting analogy with Indian history, Sinha said, “Like Muslim invaders occupied an India that was divided into small, weak kingdoms, a feat repeated by the East India Company centuries later, is Prashant Kishor, like Kanhaiya Kumar before him, going to take over a leaderless and rudderless party?” Sinha asked.
Indeed, among the other issues on the table in today’s Prashant Kishor-Sonia Gandhi meeting was the recent election routs the party suffered, lending credence to Sinha’s theory. What opinion Prashant Kishor has on the string of electoral defeats was something senior Congress leaders Ambika Soni, Digvijiya Singh, Mallikarjun Kharge, Ajay Maken, KC Venugopal, who attended the meeting, wanted to know.
Of course, there remained several points of disagreement, especially the role party is willing to give to Prashant Kishor, and so the election strategist and manager is not hurriedly joining the INC.
In March, Prashant Kishor had met Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra. Though there was no official word on the meeting, today’s meeting made it official that the buzz around Prashant Kishor joining the party was back.
Even earlier, Prashant Kishor was all set to join the party in 2020 but that plan did not materialise over several disagreements.
The INC is roping in Prashant Kishor in its plan for the assembly election of Gujarat where for decades the party has been unable to unseat the BJP, and now the AAP is also in the fray as yet another contender for power. Prashant Kishor is part of the plan for projecting industrialist, Leuva Patidar leader Naresh Patel as the chief ministerial candidate.
Lately, Prashant Kishor has been critical of the INC leadership. During the Lakhimpur Kheri incident last year, when Priyanka Gandhi Vadra was detained on her way to Lakhimpur Kheri, Prashant Kishor had tweeted there was no quick-fix solution to the “deep-rooted problems and structural weakness of GOP (grand old party)”.
“Congress’ leadership can not be the divine right of an individual, the election strategist opined. “The IDEA and SPACE that #Congress represents is vital for a strong opposition. But Congress’ leadership is not the DIVINE RIGHT of an individual especially when the party has lost more than 90% of elections in the last 10 years. Let opposition leadership be decided Democratically,” he had tweeted.
After the assembly elections of the five states in all of which the INC’s performance was pathetic, Prashant Kishor said the battle for India will be fought and decided in 2024. “Saheb knows this! Hence this clever attempt to create a frenzy around the state results to establish a decisive psychological advantage over the opposition. Don’t fall or be part of this false narrative,” he had tweeted.
Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao, who has given a clarion call for a united opposition minus the INC, recently confirmed that he was working with Prashant Kishor to bring together all parties against the BJP to fill the vacuum in the national politics.