Has the Congress party lost the ability to think long-term? The 2012 Gujarat elections would have given the party a testing ground for trying out long-lasting structural support policies.
Compared to the state's Chief Minister Narendra Modi, the Congress has much more to lose in the first phase of polling on Dec 13. The BJP strongman has been working for the 2012 battle for a long time and his foundations are strong.
The Congress is guilty of not anticipating the staying power of Modi and his long-term strategy. Instead of relishing the infighting in the opposition camp, the Congress should have consolidated its position in weak states like Gujarat.
The party with a history of well over 100 years should know that infighting and vacuum throw up surprises. The myopic vision may cost the Congress dearly.
On Dec 11, Congress leader Rahul Gandhi said Modi does not allow public to speak in Gujarat. But is anybody preventing silent grassroots work?
The Congress does not have stamina for ground work. None of its leaders want to toil for a vote. They hop around in copters and make uninspiring speeches.
The political leaders with vision display patience and fortitude. They do not show frustration at being out of power because they derive power in adulation of the public.
In contrast, those who are frustrated bring down the level of political discourse and consequently, the poll campaign resembles a fish market.
Gujaratis did not get to hear any good political speech in the period prior to the first phase. One would be foolish to expect a better quality campaign in the coming days. The Congress may well begin its homework for 2017.