NEW DELHI: It was back to business as usual for Rahul Gandhi — heavy artillery directed against the Prime Minister — as if to shrug off the red faces that could be seen among partymen after the Twitter hacking fiasco mid-week. Demonetisation was on the menu, and some cutting words boomed from the mikes at the Congress Parliamentary Party meeting on Friday.
“Narendra Modi only practises TRP politics,” said the Congress vice president. “The country has suffered tremendous damage as a result of the vanity and incompetence of our PM.” He was standing in for his mother, the indisposed Congress president, Sonia Gandhi.
In an unprecedented move, the media was later provided the footage of the speech.
That Rahul was chairing his first-ever meeting of the CPP, still peopled by quite a few stalwarts, Manmohan Singh, Ghulam Nabi Azad and Mallikarjun Kharge, A K Antony included, probably made it worth the break from the longest tradition of closed door meetings. Not to mention, the surgical strike at the Prime Minister giving the additional peg.
The Congress vice president was of the view that had the PM bothered to listen to the suggestions of democratically elected members it could potentially prevent him from making the “catastrophic” policy mistakes he was currently making. He was targeting the rather painful handling of the demonetisation process.
The Congress, he noted, has never given “India a Prime Minister who was a prisoner of his own image. We never gave India a PM who was ready to inflict such tremendous suffering on the people to protect his own persona. We never gave India a PM who based his entire policy making strategy on TRPs.’’