The DMK on Friday likened Rahul Gandhi to Jawaharlal Nehru for his liberal ideological moorings that went beyond just electoral politics and asserted that the Congress needed a "broad-minded person" like him.
At a time when the Congress appeared to be in a disarray with Rahul wanting to step down from the post of party chief due to poll drubbing, the Dravidian party said, "Rahul's political journey should be about slogging from the grassroots level.
If that is there, victory is possible."
Apparently seeking to lift Rahul's spirits, the DMK's Tamil organ "Murasoli", in its editorial, said the Congress was a broad-based party and to lead it, only a broad-minded person like Rahul was needed.
Days after DMK chief M K Stalin persuaded Rahul not to quit from the president's post, the party mouthpiece said he did not confine himself to only "electoral politics," during the run up to the polls.
Instead, Rahul, the DMK said showed his concern about the Indian society, and expressed his anguish about several aspects like religious hostility, economic inequalities, and poverty.
The DMK daily said he also understood the difference in mindset between the southern and northern states.
Rahul spoke of "Periyar (rationalist leader) and celebrated Kalaignar (late DMK patriarch M Karunanidhi)," and all such aspects went beyond poll victories and defeats, Murasoli said.
The Congress president, hence, transcended the confines of electoral politics by talking not only about Prime Minister Narendra Modi but also focusing on all such aspects.
By doing so, the DMK said, "Rahul transcended. To be very precise, Rahul Gandhi reflected the thoughts (liberal ideological stand) of Jawaharlal Nehru." "Rahul is the strong brick for building the fort of Congress and it is more strong than a mountain of sand." The DMK also said it was usual to blame the Nehru-Gandhi family during poll debacles.
"Many do not realise during times of success that it is the very same family which fetched victories for the Congress party." Similarly, some were now trying to place the blame on Rahul for the Congress party's poll defeat.
Rahul has offered to step down following the dismal performance of the Congress in the Lok Sabha elections, while the Congress Working Committee rejected it.
The BJP had on May 23 won 303 out of 542 Lok Sabha seats that went to polls, handing out a crushing defeat to the Congress and many other political opponents.