Chair leaders: a look at some of the political families in election-bound states

  • Aurangzeb Naqshbandi, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
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  • Updated: Nov 13, 2013 02:55 IST

“I agree it is undemocratic…but my position gives me certain advantages,” Congress leader Rahul Gandhi had once said about the dynastic politics.

As assembly elections in five states — billed as semi-finals before the final battle in 2014 — enter a decisive phase, dynastic politics is the flavour of the season and the advantage of lineage is easily discernible.

The Congress has often been accused of promoting the quota system and politics by inheritance. Ever since being anointed as the Congress vice-president, Gandhi has vowed to end the system that practices heirloom politics but the call appears far from being implemented.

The BJP too is fast catching up. BJP prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi had recently said at a public meeting in Bihar that he will stop calling Rahul Gandhi ‘shehzade’ or prince if the Congress promised to do away with dynastic politics.

But even his party has encouraged the trend in the poll-bound states of Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan in the name of winnability.

Political families from both the Congress and the BJP have managed to get their share in distribution of tickets despite strong resistance.

“Fact is, we are in politics to win elections…Winnability is an important consideration. Which party won’t strive to form a government?” a Congress functionary asked. “A brand name sells and voters connect immediately.”

Leaders from both the parties have repeatedly maintained that the family names help one to get an identity in politics but its sustainability depends on the person’s actions.


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