Unwanted advice

It's amazing how the change of guard in the Indian National Congress has become such a hot topic of discussion among those who have written its obit.

The change of guard had been expected since the time Sonia Gandhi went in for treatment of some mysterious disease to the US in 2011 and was admitted in a private hospital there.Speculation about the reluctant politician Rahul Gandhi taking over as the President of the party had been very high at that time.

However,overcoming all dire predictions about her frail health Sonia Gandhi continued to run the affairs of the party, fighting not only her disease but also her political adversaries even after the UPA lost power in 2014 with Rahul assisting her as the Vice President.

But it seems her recent illness in UP while campaigning for the Congress and her subsequent operation in the Gangaram Hospital for a dislocated shoulder, rather than any political game plan has finally led to the new development in the party.

Ever since the announcement the ruling BJP has been offering advisories to the Congress workers to make a better choice.On the one hand they say it will not affect their prospects whoever heads the Congress.And on the other they keep ridiculing the success record of Rahul Gandhi ever since he became actively involved in the hustle bustle of electoral politics.

One channel (we all know which) spent a full one hour debating whether the Congress could have made a better choice by using the hashtags #GagaoverRaga) to pour scorn over the Congress scion.

Without asking the super anchor if he can name any one,just one leader, in the Congress party currently who would be able to attract crowds at a public rally one would certainly like to ask why they are taking such a great interest in a party that has been consigned to the dustbin of history for at least ten years by them?

Did anyone take so much interest when Amit Shah was re-appointed the BJP president despite Delhi and Bihar results by trumpeting the success of Kerala where it won just one seat and took over Assam due to the internal feud in the then Chief Minister's family.

Why do ex-cricketers hate Arun Jaitley

The rebellion that was started by cricketer cum politician Kirti Azad some months ago against BJP strongman Arun Jaitley has gone one step further with the announcement that his wife Poonam Azad has opted to join the Aam Aadmi Party of Kejriwal.

Kirti Azad and Jaitley were involved in an open and ugly spat over the funds of Delhi District Cricket Association with Azad playing a video at a press conference to prove that Jaitley was involved in hanky panky. He was slapped by a show-cause notice by the party for indulging in indiscipline and Jaitley's bete noire Subramanian Swamy jumped into the fray by saying that he would help Kirti Azad to prepare the reply to the show cause notice.

Much has apparently changed in the BJP since then with Swamy being told to hold his arrows against Jaitley.But Poonam Azad's decision to join the AAP has sullied the rosy picture of All is Well in the Delhi BJP.

This decision could be prompted by the coming MCD elections in Delhi where the ruling AAP appears to be in a stronger position.

But Poonam Azad's decision will be a major blow to the party after Navjot Singh Sidhu's resignation from the BJP in Punjab.Chances are that Sidhu and his wife are also inclined towards joining the Kejriwal camp even though Captain Amrinder Singh,heading the Congress in Punjab has also rolled down the red carpet for the cricketer cum politician cum comedy circus judge.

If that happens, both the cricketers would be victims of Arun Jaitley's wrath.

The much maligned Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, who is fighting a battle a day against the Lt.Governor Najeeb Jung would be having the last laugh against Modi if this happens.

Will the Mahagathbandhan be scripted in Uttar Pradesh, finally?

Even though Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar is wary of the designs of Samajwadi party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav after his last experience of trying to forge an alliance with him he will not be averse to giving it a try in Uttar Pradesh.

It's all a question of need. In Bihar Nitish needed an alliance to fend off the attacks from the BJP which had roped in all its forces including the Prime Minister Narendra Modi who made more than 100 forays to Bihar for the campaign. Mulayam did not have much stakes in Bihar and he rejected the overtures from like-minded parties to forge a secular front.

This time the situation is very different.

Hedged in by his own family members who are feuding for the spoils Mulayam is shrewd enough to realise that even if his son Akhilesh Yadav manages to pull off a victory by projecting his youth over the old and corrupt leaders siding with the father he would need outside support to run his writ in the most populous state of the country.

The mutual admiration between Akhilesh and Rahul Gandhi has already sent positive vibes among the rank and file of the feuding Samajwadi Party leaders.

The master strategist Prashant Kishor has already had talks with the SP on behalf of the Congress. With this the stage is set for a Mahagathbandhan springing up in Uttar Pradesh as a replica of that which stumped the BJP in Bihar.

Having been projected as a future PM despite his denials Nitish, with a little push from Lalu should be ready to join this front.