The 28th of December 1885, is the day India’s oldest Political Party the Indian National Congress (INC) was formed. The idea for the INC was brought up by the British Administrator in India, Allan Octavian Hume in December 1884. The idea of forming the INC was brought up in a 17 member secret meeting presided by Hume.
The INC played a pivotal role in the freedom of India. The then INC consisted of over 15 million members and 70 million participants. The INC would not have existed today if not for the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi. Gandhi wanted to dissolve the Party after independence. He believed the Party achieved its aim and outlived its purpose. It is said Gandhi already drafted a resolution for the dissolution of the Party before his assassination.
Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel won the elections with majority votes. Jawaharlal Nehru did not want a position placing him second in command. However, Gandhi’s confidence in Nehru and his skills led to Nehru being declared as the first Prime Minister of India. The INC has been in power for 49 years dating to the Gandhis of today.
Positive impacts of the INC:
Economic Security: A report by the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) stated economic growth during their rule has been both inclusive and widespread. Loan facilities to Micro Companies and Small and Medium sized Enterprises (SME) have doubled during INC’s regime.
Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA): During the INC regime employment was provided to more than 4.8 crore households.
Food Security: It is stated there is a three fold increase in food subsidy during the UPA tenure.
Policies: The INC regime has ensured a significant increase in the agricultural credit. This is cited as one of the reasons for a record production of food grains. The Party gradually enhanced the Minimum Support Price (MSP) for agricultural products.
Internal Security: Militancy related incidents witnessed a significant decline in Kashmir during the INC regime. The left wing extremism cases declined gradually owing to the INC’s efforts to restore good governance in Maoist affected areas.
Social Security: The INC led UPA launched various Multi Sectoral Development Programme and scholarship schemes for minorities. The INC ensured priority sector lending for the minorities. This helped the minorities to start and expand small businesses.
Negative impacts of the INC:
GDP Growth: During the INC’s regime, India lost momentum in the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) price. The average GDP growth was 6% till 2004. The GDP growth declined gradually halting at 4.4% as of the 30th of June 2013.
Depreciation of rupee: Ever since the INC’s rule from 2004, the value of rupee tumbled down. Statistics reports show the value of the rupee was between 39 to 49 per dollar. In the last 13 years, the value of rupee dropped as low as Rs. 68 per dollar. It is said the INC’s policies did not evoke global confidence.
Current Account Dues: It is stated India once had an impressive surplus of around $8 billion. Ten years later, after the INC came to power the impressive surplus stands at (-) $80 billion.
External Debt: Ever since the INC came into power, India has witnessed more than a three fold rise in India’s external debt. Experts state the unimpressive state of the economy can be attributed to the INC’s retrospective taxes and regressive policies.
Coal scam: Distortion in the auctioning of the 194 coal blocks are well known. The INC stands heavily condemned by the opposition. The scam led to a loss of Rs. 1.86 lakh crore.
Common Wealth Games (CWG) scam: The Life President of Indian Olympic Association Suresh Kalmadi and nine others were charged with foul play leading to loss of 90 crores.