Political Sabre Rattling

The Congress rally at the Ram Lila grounds in New Delhi on Sunday marked the launch of an aggressive campaign. Battered by opposition over a series of scams, it decided to hit back, the first sign coming in Ms Sonia Gandhi’s full support for the government on the coal scam. At the Sunday rally, the party seems to have found its footing in a changing political landscape.

It has pushed through FDI in retail and is on a reform path irrespective of what the opposition has to say. Call it good luck or a quirk of fate, but the expose of the BJP President, Mr Nitin Gadkari’s financial dealings has now put the BJP on the defensive. The rally also saw Mr Rahul Gandhi, the new mascot of the party, finding his voice and the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh explaining the subsidy problem faced by the nation. The rally is the first signal that the Congress is gearing up for polls, which are due in 2014, but could happen any time. So precarious is the arithmetic that keeps the UPA in power. With the battle cry sounded the onus of brandishing sabre now lies with the BJP.