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A Take On Rahul Gandhi’s Tactics To Gain Political Momentum

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By Ankit Varma:

“Some are born great, some achieve greatness and some have greatness thrust upon them”

Rahul Gandhi, the crowned prince of Congress. “Poverty, communalism, corruption or social tensions, keep calm and call Rahul Gandhi”. Indian National Congress was marketing Rahul Gandhi as the wonder drug, cure for all the sufferings of the nation. The surname ‘Gandhi’ was a completely logical alibi for assessment or trial of any kind. This unshakable trust on DNA does not stem from the fact that Rahul Gandhi is the son of a former Prime Minister or grandson of Indira Gandhi. The fundamental reason for dynasty based politics is ‘Public Demand’. It’s largely based on exploiting the brand value without taking into consideration whether the product is capable enough.

Rahul Gandhi is certainly no stranger to the roughness and ruthlessness of Indian politics. The question whether he was forced into politics or was it his conscious decision is something only he can answer? But if one were to ask a question that has Rahul Gandhi lived up to the expectations or has he brought about any credible change is a certain no.

Rahul Gandhi still has kept himself away from the government. Congress says that he is busy strengthening the party. But what I fail to understand is how that benefits his claim of being cut-out for Prime Minister ship. At the end of the strengthening drill he might become an excellent politician. But will that prove that he has the managerial qualities of a Prime Minister. Will that prove that he is capable enough to lead a country of a billion people? Certainly all of the Prime Ministers made a humble start. Party related work was certainly a stepping stone, but they did not declare themselves a potential Prime Minister.

If he is good enough the people of the country will let him know, Congress should not stand on the rooftop and advertise this for him.

Apart form being an untested manager, Rahul Gandhi is fast turning into a political disappointment. The recent defeat in the UP elections has done a lot of damage his credibility. His recent absence from the political scene can not be passed off as a mere coincidence.

I believe the major reason for this is the over use ‘gesture based politics’ which the people are tired of, what the country needs today are solutions not gestures. Visiting houses of the poor, stopping projects can boost popularity but does not prove anything. Policies are more than capable of doing that.

Call it burden of expectations or just lack of political aptitude, Rahul Gandhi has been a big disappointment for his party and the country.

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  1. Ankit Dwivedi

    Rahul Gandhi may be a charismatic force for the party, but that in no way strengthen his appeal as a public leader. In his brief and disappointing political career, he relied on symbolic representations rather than any concrete constructive action. He better remain a party leader rather than a mass leader…!

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        An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

        Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

        Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

        The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

        Read more about his campaign.

        Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

        Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

        Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

        Read more about her campaign.

        MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

        With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

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        A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

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        As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

        Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

        Find out more about her campaign here.

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        A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

        A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

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        A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform Change.org, demanding that the Government of Assam install
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