A driverless metro rail was inaugurated in Delhi on Monday, with much fanfare. Sooner rather than later, such driverless marvels will surely ply on metro tracks elsewhere in the country, using perhaps ‘one nation, one card’. But before such oneness of purpose is achieved, the pandemic-ridden economy has to
be vaccinated. The RBI has suggested some above-the-line fiscal stimulus to stimulate growth.
Now that the economy, apparently on auto-pilot, is showing signs of picking up, the government might as well act. The stagnating demand side of the economy too is showing some signs of life, even if nowhere near pre-Covid levels. All this, experts feel, is largely sui generis, unless those direct transfers of Rs 600-2,000 to individual bank accounts are suddenly spurring demand for FMCG products, which is one of the greenshoot areas. But who can pressurise or persuade the government to act now? The main opposition party, the Congress, itself runs with no pilot. Its leader is only occasionally visible. After a few rallies in Bihar, Rahul Gandhi was so exhausted that a private holiday at sister Priyanka Gandhi Vadra’s Shimla home was needed. Soon thereafter, he was tending to his mother Sonia Gandhi, who had to take refuge in Goa to avoid Delhi’s polluted air.
Now he’s off to Milan, to take care of his grandmom. While all this is very touching, an opposition leader constantly putting his family above his political duties is less than common, if not a bit odd. Particularly when the Congress and the opposition space it holds looks empty and indecisive because of Rahul’s flights of fancy. Every individual deserves me-time, but not as a public statement or at the cost of public commitments, like say the 136th foundation day of his own party. Twitter can’t be a tool for public engagement. Like the economy, the Congress party too seems to be in need of a stimulus package to bounce back.