I have started my political career from Panchayat elections and I know how panchayat elections work hence I am not too surprised or worried about the results that we got as a party. We could have done better, but if you take all the related electoral metrics into account you will understand that the real situation is not as bad as bad as it looks. And we winning only double digit seats in the Panchayat elections should probably the least of our concerns. Back in 2012 Niranjan Babu was PCC president we had 27 MLAs in the assembly and 6 MPs in the parliament. UPA was in power and there were a minister in the central cabinet from Odisha. With that position we got 126 ZP seats. And this time around we don’t have any MPs , 16 MLAs in the current assembly and Prasad Babu as PCC president who has a different level of political aggression. We won 66 ZP seats. Now you work the numbers and you will know that we actually didn’t do as hopelessly bad as the media makes it look.
Being said that I can’t deny that Congress has issues that should be solved like right now. And every single day we continue not solving the issue we are harming ourselves a little bit more. The problem we have is not external its internal, we have created an environment within the Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee that that faceless worker who lives in village takes leadership of her/his people has no confidence in the leadership of the state. They are not able to perceive our hunger and drive to be back in power and sees us bunch of kids warring over petty issues often of insignificant importance. If they consume 1000 words about Congress from the media 800 of them are not about the fights that we are fighting for the people of Odisha sitting at the bottom of the pyramid but about squabbling leaders taking a parade party out to New Delhi to prove their popularity. Our workers are confused and the party slowly and surely has become faceless over the time. People of Odisha are disillusioned with Naveen Sarkar and have made up their minds to throw him out this time, but we have no one who will go to people to ask for votes. If we don’t ask who will give us votes. And the day we solve that we will be back with a bang, imagine the situation to be that of a F1 racing car which has doesn’t have a driver now. So we are finding auto rickshaw drivers, tractor drivers, truck drivers to take turns in trying out to get us across the finishing line but they fall short on their skills. All we need to do now is train, encourage and groom a race car driver who will have the energy and skills to drive the race car called OPCC. And from what I can disclose now is such a driver is being searched by the central leadrship and may soon be put into training. So my fellow congress soldiers keep confidence and stand with the ideology of fighting for the last row of the society.
Encouraged by their numbers show in Panchayat elections recently. BJP is going through a phase of celebration and playing some friendly fire with their partner for 9 years. But if you look at the real numbers you will quickly realize they are just celebrating in a fools paradise. In order to come to power in Odisha Naveen Patnaik’s vote has to be eroded. And all that has happened in the Panchayat elections is some congress votes have consolidated under BJP election symbol because Congress was not able to financially support a lot of ZP candidates. While BJP gave an average of 4 lakh each, Congress was able to give 25,000 only. Paltry change when you fight elections. Apart from that due to disturbances at the top most level of the party a lot of village level activists got confused about the future directions and hence resulted in indecision at the ground level. Demonitization and Ujjwala scheme were able to create some pull towards Modi but that was not significant, because if that was the case BJP would have got almost same seats as Naveen Patnaik. But they are 1/3rd which tells not much Modi effect. But whats most important for us to know that in spite of all this the local leaders of Congress put up a very spirited fight even without any party support. The number of blocks we have taken control of is very close to that of BJD. If you go to your village I wouldn’t be surprised it has a Congress family Sarpanch. And hence, I have firm belief that in 2019 we have a real chance at coming to power, all that we need is a person who can convince us that he has devoted all his time and resources with only one goal in mind that is to bring Congress to power in Odisha in 2019. The day we get that leader, the tide will turn in our favour.