Explained National

Is Rahul Gandhi Leveraging Rajiv Gandhi’s Assassination for Political Gains?

In a rally in Uttar Pradesh, Prime Minister Narendra Modi referred to “Your father was termed ‘Mr Clean’ by his courtiers, but his life ended as ‘Bhrastachari number 1′ (corrupt number 1)”. Since then, the Congress Party and its surrogates have been giving sermons on Karma, virtues and morality. In a tweet addressed to the Prime Minister, Congress President Rahul Gandhi said that Karma awaited him.

The above tweet by Rahul Gandhi contradicts him on multiple fronts.

Congress Party’s alliance with DMK negates Rahul Gandhi’s homage to his father, Rajiv Gandhi

Justice Milap Chand Jain in his report, also known as the Jain Commission Report had indicted DMK for colluding with the LTTE. The Commission was mandated to look into circumstances and conspiracies that led to Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination. The report also questioned the DMK’s stance with respect to Centre’s plan on dealing with LTTE. While the Congress Party did demand that DMK be removed from the IK Gujral-led United Front Government, there has been a tacit understanding between the two parties since UPA-1 which had continued in UPA-2 as well. It is surprising that Rahul Gandhi wants to remind the Prime Minister of laws of Karma, while he conveniently forgets that as a son and President of Congress Party, it is indeed his dharma to disengage with those who are indicted for collaborating with his father’s assassins and bring the guilty to book. It is notable that while other leaders in Opposition have not endorsed Rahul Gandhi as the Prime Ministerial candidate, DMK President MK Stalin had proposed his candidature in December 2018. He had said, “I propose Rahul Gandhi as PM. I urge other leaders present here to stand with me on this. We should support Rahul”.

Alliance with the Left

In a recent video that surfaced on social media, Journalist Vir Sanghvi says that in 1989, the campaign of the CPM in West Bengal was based on ‘Rajiv Gandhi is a Chor’.


The election slogan ‘Gali gali me shor hai, Rajiv Gandhi chor hai’ was hugely popular and all Opposition Parties including the Left had contested the election on this slogan. Even recently, when Rahul Gandhi announced his decision to contest from Wayanad, CPI (M) leader Sitaram Yechury was quick to express his disappointment. He had said his decision signals that the Congress considers the CPI(M) and the Left as its principal adversary, not the BJP and the prime minister. However, the continued alliance of Left with Congress is a telling reminder of how Rajiv Gandhi’s own party is in tacit alliance with those who had once contested polls on an anti-Rajiv Gandhi plank in reference to Bofors.

Even after Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated, not only does a certain group of Congress leaders blame him for communal incidents, but even his children and widow have always been reticent on speaking about him.  Unfortunately, 28 years after his father’s passing away, Rahul Gandhi is leveraging his father’s assassination for political gains, without realising that it is him and his party that never protected Rajiv Gandhi’s dignity.