Kanhaiya Kumar’s genius as a public speaker is self evident from his first speech in JNU on February 11 and the one he made on the campus after returning from Tihar Jail on March 3. The CPI feels it has a legitimate right to hitch its wagon to this new star. The JNU affair has in fact opened up many possibilities. Some of these may be imaginary. The CPI, the original one, suddenly has stars in its eyes. It hopes Kanhaiya will boost it to its original glory. The CPI became its rump. The CPI-M became the senior party which proceeded to rule West Bengal and Tripura for decades.
Kanhaiya won the JNU Students Union president’s election as the CPI-affiliated All India Students Federation (AISF) candidate. Naturally, the parent party, otherwise limp and wan, finds its morale boosted. Visit Ajoy Bhawan, its headquarters, and there is a comradely swagger in everyone’s walk. Overnight, they are feeling superior to their cousins, the CPI-M, who have otherwise dwarfed them all these years.