Just as the English weather has its quirks and can change its moods at a drop of a hat, the political temperament in various regions of the country too is known to have its own eccentricities. Yet, parties with varied perceptions over various issues suddenly embracing each other with the intentions of fighting a common ‘foe’ continues to amaze one!
With ‘corruption’ as that single point agenda which seems to have a distinct impression on the national political scenario today, the manner in which political dispensations and leaders justify their ‘new-found’ love for rivals with whom they were at loggerheads till the recent past has added a new dimension to Indian politics.
It is however difficult to believe that associates while cobbling up a partnership initially are unaware of each other’s shortcomings and are jolted out of a reverie only when revelations to the contrary are made later on.
The fall-out of grand alliances hence become possible when the more pro-active of the lot has been successfully wooed by a more dominant political force either by coercion or by holding out the promise of a better tomorrow, whatever that signifies.
But it needs to be said that the BJP as the undisputed political force today is virtually on a rampage, ‘annexing’ areas that were hitherto unassailable territories for the saffron-brigade.
While Modi and ensemble have every reason to gloat in the vein of veni, vidi, vici, let us not forget that such ‘conquests’ are facilitated by the Nitishes of Indian politics who have no qualms in resorting to any means to justify the ends.
By walking out of the 3-party Grand Alliance in Bihar and breaking bread with the NDA, Nitish has delivered a body-blow to the spirit of democracy in the country. For a person who has not tired of branding Modi as the embodiment of the worst forms of communalism and sectarianism in Indian polity, Nitish’s volte-face on the matter of having no truck with the BJP exemplifies him as a typical opportunist.
As so rightly said, the Modi-Nitish bond is a suspension of political morality! But then, such trends are the current rage in the Indian politics. Leaders who have constantly been on the ‘hate-radar’ suddenly turn into epitomes of ‘greatness’ and ‘invincibility’ for foes-turned-friends in politics. What a sham!
Infested by the Shylocks of modern-day politics, it is their political sustenance more than a love for the Saffron party’s political ideologies that has been drawing innumerable leaders whose interests lay elsewhere to its folds.
With the teeming presence of a number of regional forces whose claim to power cannot just be brushed aside as frivolous, it is assured that ‘players’ from such outfits will only ‘lend weight’ to the BJP’s ‘expansion programme’ over the whole of India.
While the demands for an apology from the BJP President to the electorate for dishonouring the people’s mandate and forming a government against their wishes in some of the states where it has ‘barged’ into power do appear justified, the manner in which ethics and principles have wilfully deserted Indian politics ensures that the paradigm shift in power witnessed in the current times will henceforth be decided by the likes of Nitish who have no compunction in aligning with divisive forces to serve their cause.
If the high drama over Gujarat Rajya Sabha polls is anything to by, the BJP stands accused of having used its power and clout to influence the electoral process and enticing the opposition legislators to ensure victory for itself.
From the manner in which attempts have been made by the party to convert ‘alpa bahumat’ into ‘poorna bahumat’ for itself, the politics of defections that the party is encouraging in an apparent bid to ‘saffronize’ every point of power in all the states and at the center is more than obvious.
But having said that let me hastily add that without a charismatic leader like Modi to woo the nation, it is difficult to perceive any political dispensation upsetting the BJP applecart in India, at least not in the near future.
I say ‘dispensation’ because the near-annihilation of all opposition by the BJP leaves no party intact to ever attempt a coup d’état on its own were an opportunity to present itself.
A nation that has for quite some time now been harping the mantra of coalitions continues to have an alliance at the helm of affairs in the country, but with a more dominant BJP dictating terms to the other partners.
Translating into an absolute majority at the last general elections, the overwhelming support the saffron-brigade has managed to garner for itself over the years finds the party pushing its agendas through with an alacrity and persistent sincerity never before witnessed.
The numbers are with the NDA-government, so it can achieve its objectives, no matter how critical its detractors may sound about the schemes proposed by Modi & Co. But in its eagerness to realize the grand plans put forth, the Modi-sarkar stands accused of adopting dictatorial stances on most of the issues.
Moreover, speaking about the number of path-breaking trends introduced, the slew of reforms, both social and economic, assures India a place on the global map as a force to reckon with.
However, in a hurry to unfurl the saffron-flag across the whole of the country, the Modi-ensemble is not above criticism for harbouring leanings that have a distinct communal bias to them. This in turn has reflected in the feeling of insecurity amongst the minorities in the country today.
The divisive politics that has found favour with the BJP-government is an off-shoot of the divide-and-rule policy of the British Empire that tore the great Bharat Rashtra asunder.
The NDA-government at the centre is a duly elected government that came to power solely on the promises of saving the nation from the travails of a corrupt regime. Thankfully, dishonesty and graft do not typify the present government, but should not Modi be dispelling the fears of religious discord that haunts the country today.
Religious animosity is the biggest threat to the secularism that we, as a great country, have inherited. When thought of in the highest spirit of tolerance, the motto ‘Live and let live’ has encapsulated our beliefs and ideals.
Moreover, whichever way one may look at it, India as a nation of Indians sounds better than India as a nation of Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs and Christians!(Published on 14th August 2017, Volume XXIX, Issue 33)