RPN Singh’s shift to BJP should worry the Congress big time

With RPN Singh joining the long list of exiting Congress leaders, the party is in for tough times

Priyanka Gandhi’s quest to win the Uttar Pradesh Assembly election has been dealt with a bolt from the blue. As the person in charge of the poll campaign in the state, Priyanka had been making major strides into voters’ hearts with a slew of people-oriented campaigns all these days. But then the body blow for her and the Indian National Congress just came in the form of senior Congress leader RPN Singh’s resignation from the party.

This coming at a time when the Assembly polls are just round the bend, makes it immensely tough for the Congress.  When RPN Singh leaves the Congress and heads for the BJP, it is a classic case of jumping ship. Congress has been striving hard to keep itself intact with dissent growing inside the party. Singh joining the BJP with the remark “My Motto India, First, Always”, it also needs to be deciphered that the Congress has been doing nothing for India, and that party functionaries are a disgruntled lot.

RPN Singh spoke his mind

Singh shared his resignation letter addressed to Congress president Sonia Gandhi, stating that he was embarking on a new chapter in his political journey.  After having been sidelined for speaking his mind at AICC meetings, Singh had been asked questions by the media whether his is planning a shift. But all the time he had dismissed them as rumours and continued to stay with the party. However, the latest development has come all of a sudden, when the Congress party is fighting a big election.

A loyalist of the Congress leaving the party at this time doesn’t augur well for the party. CWC and AICC member and a staunch party man, Singh moving over to the BJP could also send all the wrong signals for the grand old party. An MLA from the Padrauna constituency of Uttar Pradesh between 1996 and 2009, and then MP from the constituency after he won the 15th Lok Sabha election, RPN Singh is someone the party should never have ignored.  He had also served as Minister of State for Home Affairs during the Manmohan Singh regime.

Singh is the latest in the long line of senior congress leaders who have quit the party in recent times. The party had suffered the exit of Jyotiraditya Scindia, Sushmita Dev, Jitin Prasada, Priyanka Chaturvedi and Laliteshpati Tripathi and now with Singh also switching loyalties, the Congress High Command needs to do a reality check.

Better late than never, is what Singh feels

Post-exit, RPN Singh told the media that his former party is no longer what it used to be. And as for his BJP entry at this time, he quipped ‘better late than never’.

So as RPN Singh begins a new chapter in his political journey, it is Sonia, Rahul and Priyanka, and their supporters in the Congress party who should be worried. And they need to realise that it’s time to think and revamp their style of functioning so as to stay fresh in people’s minds. What they have been doing is nothing but pulling down a party with an illustrious history. It’s time to think sensibly and change. As RPN Singh remarked, “better late than never”.

Sanjeev Ramachandran

A journalist with 23 years of experience, Sanjeev has worked with reputed media houses such as Business Standard, The Ne More »
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