Lest we forget. The congress means more than lavatories at Mahalaxmi and lunch packets and Mr. Shivajirao patil Nilangekar and a 100 feet by 20 feet mural by M.F. Hussain.
It means more than painting the road dividers along the route that Mr. Rajiv Gandhi may be passing by and new fencings along Marine Drive and Veer Nariman Road and 20 million posters showings the faces of three or four Congress leaders.
The Congress means more than all the wealth it, possesses and can afford to spend, more than the organisation of Mr. Murli Deora, the learning of Dr. Rafiq Zakaria, the PR of Mr. Moti Daryanani the age of Mr. Vasantrao Patil. It means more than the Congress Culture as enunciated by Mr. Sharad Pawar in a hope of reentering the party.
Lest we forget. The Congress is more than 200,00 delegate, more than a fleet of ST buses, special railway passes, a vibrant youth wing of men in their late 30s and early 40s. More than its 100 man reception committee, for food, accommodation, entertainment. It is more than its film star members, Sunli Dutt and Amitabh Bachchan and Vyjayantimal Bali, more than Michael Ferreira, and it will be more than Sunil Gavaskar if and when he joins it.
The Congress is more than electing Prime ministers and imposing its own chief ministers on states. It is more than winning and losing elections, the open palm, the cow and calf, the two bullocks, Mudra and Rediffusion and Arun Nanda.
It is more than Mr. Arun Singh and Mr. Arun Nehru and the Doon School and signing instant acords and travelling abroad to settle the problem of the world. More than the nightly knew on Doordarshan and the international conferences in New Delhi and the Asian Games, which launched a new Prime Minister.
More than election promises and promises to tribal chiefs and allowing Mr. M. J. Akbar to carry on with his programmer. More than raids on industrialists and talk of doing away with economic offenders. More than all the buntings and banners and flags and lights and posters and pomp and show.
Lest we forget. The Congress is 100 years of the history of India. It is more than a party, it is a whole country.