As the Congress released its poll manifesto earlier this week, promising direct cash transfer and right to healthcare services as key focus areas, president of Swaraj India and well-known psephologist, Yogendra Yadav opined that “it the right document at the wrong time”.
The Congress, as the principal opposition party, should have carried the responsibility of defending the democracy, but it showed little determination on this front.
“It is playing normal election games when this election is not an election at all. This is capture of power through a ritual. A decent, nuanced policy document is a virtue in normal times but not when you face a determined, well-coordinated assault on Constitutional democracy,” he said in his opinion piece in The Print, making a veiled attack at the ruling BJP.
To be fair, Congress did focus on the real issues in a bid to bring this election back to the basics. It wanted to play safe. So much so, that the manifesto did not even acknowledge the least that should be said about the plight of Muslims under the Modi regime, Yadav said.
Congress also got the timing wrong, releasing pro-people promises just 10 days before the first round of polling when there is a remote chance of these promises ever reaching the intended audience.
“I doubt if many farmers will get to know that Congress has promised a nationwide loan waiver,” he said.
Yadav also expressed worry about the promises reaching the targetted masses when “TV studios have become BJP’s party offices and the Election Commission is being widely seen as an extension of the PMO.”