Skip to main content

EVM manipulation? Only circumstantial, but no direct evidence exists: Congress leader

Counterview Desk
In an open address to his party colleagues, Congress leader Salman Khurshid, senior Supreme Court advocate and former foreign minister, has said that at a time when “honest views” of the party are being “maligned” by suggesting that the party lacks “patriotism and religious impartiality”, it would be “less than fair” to claim that the party has not been “forced” to retreat from its “outspoken defence of freedom and right to equal protection and concern for every democratic view.”
Saying that there is “strategic adjustments to preserve ideological purity in the face of devious attacks are morally permissible, indeed imperative”, he insists in a Facebook post, “But we cannot allow our collective conscience to be confused. Worse than defeat is surrender. The space that we continue to occupy (12 crore votes) must not be vacated for a less deserving alternative.”

Text:

Our leaders, particularly Shri Rahul Gandhi, have felt deep personal disappointment in the election results. Those of us who owe allegiance and emotional attachment to them (count in lakhs) have additional distress to see them so traumatised. Silence and forbearance is the best attitude in such situations. But many colleagues have chosen to speak. In the circumstances silence can be misjudged. I have therefore chosen to depart from holding my peace.
When things go wrong as they have, there is inevitably something that needs to be done. Reinventing and change sound good and reassuring but we need to be sure we know from what and why before looking at how and where. It is a tricky question but a pertinent one: have we ceased to be the Congress we were or are we too much of the original Congress when the world around us has changed.
Furthermore, we must not make the mistake of becoming something we have opposed all along and indeed considered it to be our raison detre. Put simply let us not endeavour to survive if we have no real reason to live; makes little sense to be a theatre character looking for a script. Congress must live because it has an ideology that must not die.
Our current dilemma seems to be that our unique and wholesome ideology has been viciously attacked and undermined by our adversaries having twisted it and misinterpreted it to the people. Our honest views have been maligned for alleged lack of patriotism and religious impartiality. It will be less than fair to claim that we have not suffered self-consciousness that forced us to retreat from our outspoken defence of freedom and right to equal protection and concern for every democratic view.
The space that we continue to occupy (12 crore votes) must not be vacated for a less deserving alternative
On the other hand, the distinction between ideology and strategy should not be overlooked. Strategic adjustments to preserve ideological purity in the face of devious attacks are morally permissible, indeed imperative. But we cannot allow our collective conscience to be confused. Worse than defeat is surrender. The space that we continue to occupy (12 crore votes) must not be vacated for a less deserving alternative. 
People in the party are proclaiming instant formulae for fixing the damage we have suffered. Pardon my disagreement with instant solutions which seem to be like shooting in the dark. My ground reading does not validate the extent of the mandate although it gives some idea of our appeals having fallen on deaf ears.
Have we all not been puzzled by the universal lack of celebration of the victory in public spaces? Are the people equally puzzled? Dare we look at the EVM doubts with determination to settle the issue one way or other? There is after all much by way of circumstantial evidence, though no direct evidence. If this was the only matter under the shadow of doubt we could have moved on.
But there is so much more nibbling away, nay gorging on our democracy that each barricade of resistance is a matter of life and death for the Idea of India. Without meaning to be arrogant (something we are accused of often) the Congress too is part of that Idea. It matters not which one of us will live to see the Idea prevail but enough will be the honour to have fought for it. Citadels oppression and hate crumble when the warriors of truth and non-violence march to the tune of Mahatma Gandhi.
Let us remain united, together, with faith in ourselves.

Comments

TRENDING

Astonishingly sycophantic: Ex-Gujarat topcop on 2002 Godhra riots probe panel report

By Rajiv Shah  In a scathing critique of the 2002 communal riots inquiry commission report, released by the Gujarat government in December 2019 five years after it was submitted, the State’s former topcop RB Sreekumar has said that it “unequivocally” and “meticulously” takes care “to refrain from probing and taking cognizance of any deviant action of omission and commission by the State administration, particularly those operating in the criminal justice system, who facilitated extensive mass violence and enabled brigands to perpetrate anti-minority crimes.”

Two of 12 top caste-based sexual violence cases from 'model' Gujarat: NGO report

By Rajiv Shah   The National Council of Women Leaders (NCWL), a civil rights group, has compiled what it has called “landmark cases of caste-based sexual violence” between 1985 and 2020 to mark the first anniversary of the notorious Hathras gangrape case, which led to the death of a young Dalit woman in September 2020.

Riddled with Brahmanical mindset, India's health care 'serving' corporate interests

By Vidya Bhushan Rawat*  In this second part of my conversation (click here for first part), Dr Manisha Bangar speaks about the health crisis in India how the government is trying to privatise things, and where our response during the Corona period was lacking. She also gives us an understanding of people opposing nutritious meals for children in the mid-day meal.

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

Buddhist shrines were 'massively destroyed' by Brahmanical rulers: Historian DN Jha

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

Inaccurate gender-relevant data 'spoiling' government policy on Covid social impact

By Simi Mehta*  The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic has been different across vulnerable groups. They were hit by the pandemic at various stages, whether it was accessibility to medical treatment or financial support. The second wave witnessed human suffering at a level where one can never forget the traumatized faces of people due to the inaccessibility and unavailability of essential medical services such as hospitals beds and oxygen. The probability of the third wave has also been one of the major upcoming challenges.

Flamboyant 'demagogues' adjust politics, personality in shadow of democracy

Modi, Erdogan, Bolsonaro By Ajit Singh The terms dictators and demagogues are used interchangeably in various contexts, but there is a difference. The former rule over a totalitarian states where governments are able to exercise complete influence over every aspect of citizens’ life, whereas the latter are a "wannabe dictators" but due to the system of checks and balances they are are not fully capable to create police states.

Power supply lines in Thar 'pushing' Great Indian Bustard to extinction: Researchers

By Rosamma Thomas*  Electricity supply lines pose a huge risk to birds and affect biodiversity, but there is little research about the numbers of birds dying of such collision in the tropical nations. In August 2021, academic journal Biological Conservation carried the results of a survey conducted in 2017-18 on 4,200 sq km of the Thar Desert in Jaisalmer district of Rajasthan. This was the first comprehensive survey of this nature in the region.

Vindictive raids? Centre 'retaliates' after Delhi govt child rights body's clean chit to ex-babu

By Our Representative  Over 700 academics, advocates, activists, civil servants, writers, film makers, journalists, musicians and artists have condemned the raids by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on the offices and private home of top IAS bureaucrat-turned-human rights and peace activist Harsh Mander, stating, the aim is nothing but to “harass and intimidate” him.

Hard times? Seeking to promote Urdu amidst 'efforts' to brand it as language of Muslims

By Firoz Bakht Ahmed*  Those who believe that Urdu is a dying language, must come to the National Council for Promotion of Urdu Language (NCPUL), spend some time here and see that Urdu, like any other language, is on a fast track. For the connoisseurs of Urdu, it is a heaven!