As a national party that desires to rule one of the world’s largest economies in the middle of global convolution, the Congress can ill-afford careless populism.
Election manifestos in India assure electorate much more than what is really deliverable. There is, in consequence, a difference between what a party knows it will be able to execute and the oratory it puts out in the run-up to elections. What must have been a sacred, serious exercise, with a party outlining its dream and plans in an official document, becomes just a election trick, just as simply overlooked once the voting is concluded. But manifestos still provide to describe a normative structure of what is in general wanted, even if not exactly what would be delivered. This is why the Congress party’s manifesto in Chhattisgarh is a huge disenchantment.
The Congress, looking for a return after a decade, has declared a huge raise in the price for paddy procurement, free power for water pumps and zero-interest crop loans. These put forward that fiscal discipline does not matter, that sustainability of the power sector is not a matter of public anxiety, that interest rates are costs that can be randomly hiked or decreased by the state at will. Correct, political parties are free to pledge voters the sun and the moon, in their knowledge. But such irresponsible populism as is enclosed in this manifesto insults the intellect and understanding of the people of Chhattisgarh.
The people have sufficient brains to know that supposed free lunches have concealed costs and that these costs would be pulled out from them in some other manner. Normally, this takes the shape of dysfunctional governance, blackouts, irregular water supply and unhealthy banks that perceive farm loans as a load rather than as a striking business they have to race for. As a national party that desires to rule one of the world’s largest economies in the middle of global convolution, the Congress can ill-afford careless populism.