The Lok Sabha elections of 2014 proved to be disaster for the Indian National Congress. With their worst ever defeat they were able to hold onto to only 44 seats. The face of the elections for the Congress was the Gandhi scion, Rahul Gandhi. While awaiting the results, every Congressmen was busy defending Rahul baba. However, after the humiliating defeat of the Congress on May 16, there seems to be a growing chorus for Rahul to quit.
A member of All India Congress Committee (AICC) and senior leader TH Musthafa demanded on Wednesday that AICC vice president Rahul Gandhi should quit and Priyanka Gandhi should step in to rescue the grand old party.
Commenting on Rahul Gandhi, the Kerala leader called him a “joker”. “Rahul behaved like a joker and that's the reason why the Congress suffered a major reversal in the Lok Sabha polls. The role of a prime minister is not child's play and the people knew it and handed out the worst defeat to the Congress party.”
"He should take responsibility and quit and if not he should be removed and Priyanka Gandhi should be made the new president of the party," Musthafa added.
"His (Rahul's) mad style of working using computer and internet and in the company of a group of CWC members who only praise whatever he does has caused this defeat. It's unfortunate that even AK Antony belongs to this group," said Mustafa.
Former Union minister Milind Deora was one of the first voices of criticism towards Rahul and his advisors. “Rahul Gandhi's advisors did not have their ears to the ground and those with no electoral experience were calling the shots," Deora said. He also made a direct comment at Rahul, saying, "People who take the advice also have to bear responsibility."
Milind Deora himself suffered a shocking defeat in Mumbai South to a low-profile Shiv Sena candidate.
Previously, Congress ally Muslim League in their editorial Chandrika joined the blame game. They blamed the Congress vice president outright for the shameful loss in the Lok Sabha polls. The editorial said Rahul's 'one man show' failed. The newspaper also said, "The Rahul brigade failed to learn lessons from various assembly election defeats. Letting an inexperienced Rahul, who was not even a minister at state level, to lead the fight made it easy for Modi to execute his hi-tech campaign."
On the other hand, Congress leader Digvijaya Singh encouraged Rahul Gandhi to lead the opposition in the Parliament. He said, "I strongly feel he is the leader and has to lead from the front. He should be the leader of opposition."
His comment comes at a time where there is strong resentment amidst the Congress Committee after their dismal loss. And a key moment, where they are in the process of deciding, who will be the face of the opposition.