Mumbai: In a scathing criticism of the Congress, its former spokesperson Priyanka Chaturvedi said Friday the party lacked clarity over its leadership and has built a “false narrative” about being liberal, inclusive and standing for women’s empowerment.
“Clarity of leadership has a lot to do with the younger generation. They want to see a leadership that is clearly defined, talks about its aspirations and dreams and where it sees India 20 years from now, one which talks about the future, about the growth story which is together. When you continue to speak about welfare measures and not find ways to create job employment…don’t click with people. This I believe were things that didn’t work for them,” the Shiv Sena leader said at the second edition of the Democracy Wall’s second season.
ThePrint’s Democracy Wall is a free-speech campus initiative and the latest edition was held at the Amity University in Mumbai.
Chaturvedi, who left Congress for the Shiv Sena in April, also added that her former party lacked strong ideas while spelling out reasons behind its rout. “You can only communicate well if you have strong ideas supporting you. If your ideas keep changing depending on the mood of the nation, it doesn’t work and you are not able to convince your workers. This was exactly what the political party was suffering from,” she said while responding to questions.
She also said that her former party had built a ”false narrative” about being liberal, inclusive and standing for women empowerment. ”I see a political party that keeps harping on women’s empowerment but when it comes to their own, they would rather say – keep quiet. If justice can’t come our way, if women cannot be supported in the political journey which anyway is a tough journey for any woman, then I don’t think that party is following the ideology that it is propagating,” the leader added.
‘Important that law & order is equal for all’
When asked if the government should interfere with religion, Chaturvedi remarked how politics is also a religion in India. But soon added that it would be “immature to believe the two fronts cannot be reconciled”.
Chaturvedi also emphasised that it was necessary for the law to take its course on crimes such as mob lynching. “Whether we talk about mob lynching or other issues, India has seen plenty of them. It is important that law and order is equal for all and judiciary come down heavily on those perpetrating such crimes,” she said.
On the scrapping of Article 370, the politician said, “In hindsight, history will judge the Prime Minister rightly and correctly for taking this bold step.”
“I stand in solidarity with the people of Kashmir but I also understand that as a government, with more inputs coming its way, it will do something that will ensure that the entire move — from the removal of Article 370 to actions taken after it — would be resolved in a peaceful manner. In a way that no other nation tries to interfere in the destiny and future of the people of Jammu and Kashmir,” she said.
Addressing a question on personality cult surrounding politicians, ”We cannot challenge the voters. I think they have seen something and that is building the personality. That personality will also be up for questioning sooner or later. It happened to Indira ji during the Emergency and she came back to power. We need to realise that perhaps our country is unique in itself,” she said.