The sealing of the DMK-Congress alliance with the national party bagging just 25 seats is an indication of how Congress is fast losing ground. In 2016, DMK had offered 41 seats but Congress could win just 8, a 20% strike rate. Similarly, in Bihar Congress wrested 74 seats but could win just 19, badly letting down the alliance in the process. Not surprisingly, Tejashwi Yadav is supporting TMC rather than the Congress-CPM combine with which he made common cause some months ago.
MK Stalin has reason to be worried of such a scenario repeating. He also has several other allies to accommodate. Further, Congress has had difficulty keeping even its winning flock together, which could become instrumental in the event of a hung assembly. However, unlike Bihar, this round of elections is witnessing greater involvement of the Gandhi siblings.
Rahul is spending time in Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Pudhucherry and Priyanka has campaigned in Assam, another state where Congress has been forced into an alliance. However, rather than ad hoc roles, it is time Congress settles the vacuum at the top and elect a full time party president. The failure to project itself as a 24×7 counterweight to BJP is leading to regional parties losing their respect for Congress.
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