ANI Photo | Congress should think whom to project as its face: Sharmistha Mukherjee

Months ahead of the Lok Sabha polls, daughter of former President Pranab Mukherjee, Sharmistha Mukherjee, said that the Congress should think about whom to project as its face, as the party had lost badly in the last two Lok Sabha elections when Rahul Gandhi was the party’s face.
“If a party is losing continuously under the leadership of a particular leader, then it is important for the party to think about it. Congress should think about who should be the face of the party,” Mukherjee said speaking to ANI on Monday.
“Congress needs to take care of this thing that, in 2014 and 2019, Rahul Gandhi lost in a very bad manner, he was the face of Congress. Two Lok Sabha elections happened,” she pointed out.
The Congress won 52 seats in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, while it got 44 seats in the 2014 polls.
Mukherjee said that his late father used to give importance to having communication with different ideologies even if one is opposed to it.
“My father used to believe that in a democracy, there are different ideologies, you might not agree with their ideology but that doesn’t mean that the existence of that ideology is wrong. So it is important to have communication,” she said.
The author of ‘Pranab My Father: A Daughter Remembers’, shared that when her father was in active politics, he had the ability to hold discussions with other party members in cases of Parliament logjam.
“When my father was in active politics, he was considered as ‘generator of consensus’, because he had this quality of holding discussions with other party members while there was a Parliament logjam,” the Congress leader said.
“Democracy is not just about speaking; listening to others is also very important. His (Pranab Mukherjee) ideology was that there should be dialogue in a democracy,” she highlighted.
Explaining the reason why the former President accepted the invitation of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the Congress leader said, “If an RSS pracharak has come to power by winning with a large majority, you cannot ignore the ideology or organisation. Hence, he accepted the invitation of RSS and on their platform he spoke about the ideology of the Congress, its plurality and inclusiveness and about Pandit Nehru.”
Mukherjee said that earlier she had difference with her father over him deciding to attend the RSS event, but then, with time she came to realise the importance of having a dialogue in a democracy.
“When he shared with me his decision to go to the RSS event, I was very angry with him. I had even tweeted against it. But later on, I realised that in a democracy there are many ideologies and even if you do not agree with them, it is necessary to maintain a dialogue between them,” she said

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