The Indian political scene is in for a massive change, albeit it will come in a phased manner.
Rahul Gandhi, the son of India’s most powerful politician, Sonia Gandhi, appears to be preparing to finally take on a larger role in the Congress party and the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government in the coming days.
Observers have offered a number of different predictions about what role Rahul will take on, however.
Indian media outlets, for example, are awash in reports that Rahul will assume the position of Leader of the House in the Lok Sabha. Others, however, forecast that Rahul’s mother will assume that post.Enjoying this article? Click here to subscribe for full access. Just $5 a month.
Logically speaking, such reports are ludicrous.
The simple reason why Rahul won’t be the Leader of the House of the Lok Sabha even if he does join the government is an operational one.
The Leader of the House is traditionally one of the most senior members of the union cabinet as well as the house. He or she has to be available in the house around the clock to handle one crisis after another whenever parliament is in session. The incumbent should have personal contacts with the leaders of all the parties and must be well-versed in parliamentary proceedings so that they can respond adequately during a debate.
Generally speaking, these are the kind of qualifications that are associated with employees, not their employers. The reality is that the Gandhis are employers not employees.
Why should Rahul or Sonia take up a cumbersome and accountable job like the Leader of the House in the Lok Sabha, when they can get a better qualified and more experienced person to handle the mundane post?