Here’s why the BJP is obsessed with Rahul Gandhi, even though he poses no threat to Modi

Here’s why the BJP is obsessed with Rahul Gandhi, even though he poses no threat to Modi

Why Rahul Gandhi is a threat to Modi-BJP now than he was ever before

Rahul Gandhi, the leader of the Indian National Congress (INC), has often been dismissed as a weak and ineffective opponent to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). However, recent developments suggest that Rahul Gandhi may pose a greater challenge to Modi-BJP in the upcoming 2024 general elections than he did in the past.

There are three main reasons why Rahul Gandhi is a threat to Modi-BJP now:

1. He has improved his public image and communication skills. Rahul Gandhi has been working hard to shed his image of a reluctant and dynastic leader, and to present himself as a more confident and charismatic politician. He has been more active on social media, engaging with the public and the media on various issues. He has also improved his oratory skills, delivering sharp and witty speeches in Parliament and at rallies. For instance, in the recent no-confidence motion debate in the Lok Sabha, he tore into the Modi government with intelligence and vigour. He also surprised everyone by hugging Modi at the end of his speech, showing a gesture of goodwill and maturity.
2. He has gained support from regional allies and opposition parties. Rahul Gandhi has been successful in forging alliances with several regional parties, such as the DMK in Tamil Nadu, the NCP in Maharashtra, the RJD in Bihar, and the JMM in Jharkhand. These parties have a significant vote share and influence in their respective states, and can help the Congress challenge the BJP's dominance. Moreover, Rahul Gandhi has also reached out to other opposition parties, such as the TMC, the SP, the BSP, and the AAP, to form a united front against the BJP. He has shown willingness to accommodate their demands and aspirations, and to respect their regional identities and interests.
3. He has exposed the failures and weaknesses of the Modi government. Rahul Gandhi has been vocal in criticizing the Modi government's policies and performance on various fronts, such as the economy, health care, education, agriculture, defence, foreign affairs, and social justice. He has highlighted the problems faced by the common people due to demonetization, GST, unemployment, inflation, farmer distress, COVID-19 pandemic, vaccine shortage, fuel price hike, communal violence, corruption scandals, and human rights violations. He has also questioned the Modi government's accountability and transparency on issues such as the Rafale deal, the Pegasus spyware case, the electoral bonds scheme, and the PM CARES fund.

These three factors have helped Rahul Gandhi gain more popularity and credibility among the voters, especially among the youth, women, minorities, and rural masses. According to a recent NDTV-CSDS survey, 27 percent of the respondents picked Rahul Gandhi as their preferred choice for Prime Minister, compared to 43 percent for Narendra Modi. This shows that Rahul Gandhi has narrowed down the gap with Modi considerably since 2019.

However, this does not mean that Rahul Gandhi has an easy path to victory in 2024. He still faces many challenges and obstacles from within his own party and outside. He has to deal with internal dissent and factionalism within the Congress, which has weakened its organizational structure and morale. He has to resolve the leadership crisis and succession plan within his family and party. He has to overcome the perception of being an outsider and elitist among some sections of society. He has to counter the BJP's massive propaganda machine and ideological appeal. And he has to prove that he can deliver on his promises and vision for India.

Therefore, Rahul Gandhi is a threat to Modi-BJP now than he was ever before, but he still has a long way to go before he can pose a serious challenge to them in 2024.


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