When India's opposition congress party went down to a landslide on Thursday, its leader, Rahul Gandhi, was also convincingly beaten in his own parliamentary seat – a North Indian constituency who had previously sent three of his family members to parliament half a century.
The loss of the family Bastion seat Amethi emphasized the dwindling relevance of South Asia's most famous political dynasty in Narendra Modi 's "New India" along with the decline in the pluralistic vision of India, which has been synonymous with the Nehru-Gandhi family in the last seven decades.
"The public is the champion, and the gentleman has made his decision," Gandhi, 48, told a press conference in Delhi where he admitted defeat to the ruling Bharatiya Janata party (BJP) candidate, Smriti Irani. Gandhi will continue to sit in the Indian parliament in another seat, Wayanad in the Kerala state, that he won easily on Thursday.
Congress was truunced by Modi's party in 201
The loss will revive the question of whether Gandhi and his family should refrain from controlling the Congress for fresh faces, exactly a century ago his grandfather, Motilal Nehru, took the helm of the party that led India's freedom movement.
Jawaharlal Nehru, grandfather Gandhis, strongly opposed Hindu nationalism and attempted to establish India as a secular country, a vision that the modern party continues to maintain.
Under Modi, the bravest Hindu nationalist ever to occupy the office, This tradition has been reworked as a long national nightmare owed to it even for the breakup of the subcontinent.
"It is in your character that the division of India happened," Modi said to Gandhi in parliament in February.
The land was broken and you sowed the poison. After 70 years of independence, it didn't take a day when the 125 crore [1.25 billion] Indians were not punished for your sins. "
Although dynasties are still common in Indian media, business and politics, Modi has successfully drawn the contrast between his biography as the son of a bad tea seller with Gandhi's more gilded education." BJP spokeswoman Charu Pragya, who echoes a typical charge. "They like where they live, they like their lives, their holidays. They are not willing to make a change. For Modi, the change comes from deep inside. "
The state-party stalwarts like Sam Pitroda claim that the long history of the Gandhi family in politics should be seen as active." They are not children who grew up in the street, "he told the Guardian last month." They bring a particular pedigree. "
He recalled recently traveling to a golfing country with Gandhi, where they met an elderly leader." [The ruler] said to him: "When I went to India, you were three years old and you took my headgear and put it on his head. "He told him he was like his grandson … Now it's an asset," Pitroda said.
Priyanka Churvedi, a former congressman spokesman who fell out with the party earlier this year and joined a rival, said the party had to understand that India had changed.
"This country is extremely hopeful," she said. "It has a majority population [younger] than 35. They are grateful for freedom fighters, but they do not want to be taken back there. They want to know what is in store for them in the future. "