Free Press Journal

Rahul Gandhi’s foreign visits have domestic agenda?


Rahul Gandhi’s finely orchestrated sojourns in foreign countries have a domestic agenda. A well-provided advance team prepares the itinerary with the focus on the NRIs living in these countries. An agenda for the public event is fixed week in advance. Rahul is tutored by his backroom minders, some of whom accompany him on the visits. He is primed to say things which they believe would make headlines back home. But however much you brief him ahead of the public event, an unscripted question from someone in the audience ends up revealing the Real Rahul. And that, we are afraid, is not a very edifying sight. For invariably he puts his foot in the mouth, uttering things which are not exactly true or showing his complete ignorance.

His latest visit to Germany and the UK, too, has yielded a lot of controversy. In Hamburg, Germany, while talking of lack of jobs in India — China creates 50,000 jobs per hour against 450 in the same period in India — he implied that the young people were drawn to terrorism also because of joblessness. Lack of vision and divisions in the society, the Congress chief averred, contribute to the problem of joblessness. Expanding on the theme, he went on to liken the RSS to the banned Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt. The RSS was out to capture India’s institutions, attacking the idea of India, clamping down on press freedom… ‘People are being shot and killed because of what they write…’ Rahul’s pearls of wisdom continued to flow at another interaction, this time in London. Here he touched on Modi’s foreign policy, which he said was ‘episodic’.

To buttress his charge, he cited the Doklam stand-off, which he said happened because the Government was not careful. The Congress chief further proclaimed, “…the truth is that the Chinese are still in Doklam today… Modi had treated Doklam as an event, rather than as a process… Had he treated it as a process, he would not have failed to stop it…” Then he went on to prescribe his solution to the handling of Doklam and other such problems: “There is an Indian way of doing things that is completely different to the Chinese way or the America way… We have our own ideas, tested by non-violence and listening… We specialise in reducing confrontation…” Such inanities pepper his interaction, especially when he is up against an unrehearsed query or a supplementary. Sounding philosophical, the Congress chief at one point said that ‘there are a number of ideas running around the planet and one has to make sure one is giving a vision to one’s people… If one does not give vision, someone else is going to give that…”

Incidentally, he also maintained that the foreign policy was handled by the PM and the PMO while Sushma Swaraj is busy getting visas for people… Rahul declined to  admit, when asked, about the 1984 Sikh killings that the Congress Party was involved; other people were. He also criticised the RSS for not admitting women who are treated as second class citizens. Predictably, the spokespersons of the BJP and the RSS were quick to rebut him. It is not clear why they bother since the people know the truth already. For instance, the direct involvement of senior Congress leaders in the anti-Sikh pogrom is a matter of public record. Indeed, Manmohan Singh, as prime minister, had apologised on behalf of the Congress Party for the cold-blooded murder of over three thousand Sikhs in Delhi alone. On Doklam too, if his claim is true, the Chinese have every right to be on their side of the China-Bhutan border just as the

Indian troops have a right to remain on this side of the border. Again, even remotely likening the RSS to the Muslim Brotherhood is to reveal one’s ignorance of both these organisations. When all is said and done, there is essentially one problem with Rahul. And that is that he lacks the gravitas to hold forth with some authority, nay, clarity on domestic and international affairs. Despite fervid efforts of the sycophants around him to tutor him, he remains a dull and rather ill-equipped ‘student’.