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Congress has no future sans Koirala family

Shashanka Koirala. Photo: THT/ File

Staff Writer, KATHMANDU: The Congress party is about to convene for general convention to essentially effect a transition at the top, with dog eat dog scenario bringing out the worst in all involved. The best or worst is yet to unfold, though.

The party is currently at the crossroads and is thus for the first time ever since it was founded at the mercy of those who can be trusted to make a personal vehicle out of it. Given how desperate some can get in power has driven many to keep distance already.

Sushil Koirala was perhaps the last who carried the hoary legacy of the party once led by B P, K P Bhattarai and Ganesh Man Singh and not necessarily in the capacity of its chairman. The problem with the world is no one truly knows value of those in public life until they flit past the political screen.

Sushil Da, as he was called in the Congress inner circle, was truly a socialist of the highest order and played the fitting successor of B P family by keeping the party together. There was no scam while he was heading the government, with ministers representing the party coming out clean.

One can even say that he was much better a leader than Girija Prasad Koirala since the latter earned bad name for fostering corruption and tending to promote cronyism. Certainly Sushil Da had no match in his generation.

Up next and stampeding for leadership are Krishna Sitaula, Ram Chandra Paudel and Sher Bahadur Deuba. All these can be expected to be in the news only as long as Dr Shashank Koirala does not throw in the towel in what is the need of the moment.

While Paudel does not have the required element needed in a leader who leads masses given his pettiness Deuba, if given any chance to lead the party, can be expected to turn it into a personal vehicle, fortifying it with cronies, given the trend he has already demonstrated.

Someone who traditionally represents far western region he has alienated trust soldiers of the party at the cost of opportunists and and those who have identified shorter route to money and all that it attracts.

That has already reflected in the votes party secured in election. While the first election after 1990 saw Congress winning all the 18 seats up for grabs the subsequent election saw Congress losing in too many seats. Congress is not fully behind him in the region. And it looks like it will further alienate.

This can be seen in other parts of the country with the bad side of a leader likely to travel faster than anything. Not many consider him a leader there where Koirala family has the hold and huge following. He has tended to get blackmailed by his own following for reasons known only to him and something that has seen upstarts rising under him.

Unless of course Dr Koirala steps in and it appears that he will be fighting it out the Congress party is doomed to be reduced to a fringe party at the next election. Apart from missing charisma in the leadership, what is going to play a large part is political parties per se have lost their credibility, with successive government not contributing to economic agenda.

Congress will find it doubly impossible to win any election with a leader who has no credibility and a party which is fortified with cronies out their to chase money. Congress can still get a life if someone from Koirala family steps in.

Published Date: Tuesday, February 23rd, 2016 | 09:11 PM

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