If Rahul Gandhi is going to play a bigger role “soon”, as he enigmatically put it, then he better be prepared to answer questions. It is two years away from general elections and no one yet knows much about him.
The post of the prime minister is not about distributing wheelchairs and hobnobbing with youth icons of questionable merit. I do not know about the rest of you, but I would like to ask him a few things:
- What is his stand on reservations – for Scheduled castes/Tribes, Other Backward Classes, women, minorities, and a Uniform Civil Code?'
- How does he view foreign investment as opposed to encouraging local industry, and if he does not see them as mutually exclusive then will he clarify?
- What is his opinion on the role of the army, AFSPA (Armed Forces Special Powers Act), separatist leaders, and Jammu & Kashmir?
- If he stands by the nuclear deal, can he elucidate his reasons?
- What are his views on foreign policy with the west?
- Where SAARC and NAM are concerned, does he see India as a superpower or as an equal stake-holder and why?
- On Indo-Pak relations, is he a hawk or a dove or some other bird, and does he believe that trade and people-to-people contact are sufficient for diplomatic ties?
- Regarding terrorism, is he able to tell chalk from cheese and cheese from rat, or does he prefer to go along with the US “war on terror”?
- What are his views on regional autonomy and how much leeway would the Congress give its allies in coalition politics?
- Does he realise that giving sops to people/communities amounts to bribery, so what does he think about such corruption?
This is not an exhaustive list, but as a layperson I have no idea about how he thinks, and the two mum 'M's in his life - mummy and Manmohan Singh - are not of much help. Leave those mid-day meals and donation drives to people who need those jobs.
I do not want the BJP to come to power at the Centre. But, junking the devil for the deep sea only to find it shallow is no alternative.