What’s changed over the past year? In 2021 deliberations over election strategist Prashant Kishor joining Congress went nowhere. But assembly elections since then have underlined that the party is no longer able to mobilize the anti-incumbency vote against BJP even in states, not to mention how it is being beaten by regional parties too.
Unable to replace the Gandhis at the helm, even as they are no longer able to win elections for the party, Congress needs a desperate infusion of some fresh energy, and right now Kishor is the only one knocking on its door with three bags full.
Prashant Kishor proposal: A Gandhi to be Congress chief, a non-Gandhi VP
Could he prove a disappointment as in 2017 in Uttar Pradesh? Can the Gandhis really fall in line with whatever national narrative he judges will work? Can they line up the squabbling party elders behind him? Resistance to him being inducted as an office bearer is already widely reported. But against all these doubts, there are 1) the many impressive successes in Kishor’s CV and 2) Congress being completely out of better options. The party has a crying need for his command over big data management and over polling voter preferences. The continuous failures of its own political strategizing make an airtight case for experimenting with Kishor’s skillset, rather than replaying its own tired playbook.