Is the Congress reading the mood of the nation/the electorate correctly? Judging by the Congress-led Maharashtra government’s stand on the Adarsh Cooperative scam, it doesn’t seem so.
At a time when corruption is high on the agenda of the voters and the promise of clean governance has brought rich dividends to the Aam Aadmi Party, a newbie in the political landscape of the country, the Maharashtra cabinet has junked the report of the Adarsh Commission of Inquiry, which was tabled in the assembly recently.
The report indicted four former Congress chief ministers, including Union home minister Sushilkumar Shinde, Ashok Chavan and two Nationalist Congress Party ministers for extending political patronage to those who were responsible for the controversial building.
By not taking action against those involved, the Congress has only given the Opposition yet another stick to beat it with.
On Sunday, the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi in Mumbai attacked the ruling party on the issue, saying: “On the one hand, they [the Congress] reject the Adarsh report, and on the other, they lecture on freeing India of corruption and take credit for the Lokpal Bill”.
Even a die-hard Congress supporter would agree that Mr Modi’s logic will strike a chord with even a not-so-diehard supporter of the BJP.
The truth, something that the Congress is refusing to see, is that even if doesn’t take action against those who have been named in the report, the damage has been done and the two judges of the Commission Justice JA Patil and P Subramanian have put the whole issue in perspective by writing that “Adarsh is not a saga of ideal cooperation but a shameless tale of blatant violations of statutory provisions, rules and regulations.
It reflects greed, nepotism and favouritism on the part of some people”. When such a scathing statement is played over and over again in the media, the damage could be irreversible. Before it’s too late, the Congress should act fast and decisively and at least cancel all the illegal allotments. Otherwise, the case will hit it hard, especially in Mumbai considering affordable housing in the city is a distant dream for many.