BJP, Left face existential dilemma

Discussion in 'International Politics' started by Yusuf, May 17, 2009.

  1. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    It may be difficult to deal with defeat, but the regret of a drowned dream is quickly overtaken by the compulsions of survival. Both the BJP and the Left now face an existential dilemma, and will require honesty to pare away that part of the dogma that has checked the growth of one and undermined the success of the other.

    The BJP might want to consider a fundamental fact about our country. India is not a secular nation because Indian Muslims want it to be secular. India is a secular nation because Indian Hindus want it to be secular.

    It would be wrong to dismiss everyone in the BJP as communal. But L K Advani's efforts to sustain the inclusive image fashioned by Atal Behari Vajpayee were constantly undermined by the rhetoric of leaders who did not understand that the language of conflict had passed its sell-by date. The turning point came with Varun Gandhi's immature speech. The BJP condemned it but did not disown it completely, for fear of losing the extreme in its search for the centre. What seems obvious now did not seem so clear then. Varun Gandhi should have been dropped as a candidate. Worse, Varun Gandhi fell in love with his new pseudo-aggressive image, and projected it in statements and pictures that went into every home through television. This young Gandhi even began to fantasise a future as chief minister of Uttar Pradesh. It is interesting that regional BJP leaders understood that this was toxic. The Madhya Pradesh party bluntly told Varun Gandhi he was not needed while the Bihar unit was relieved when Nitish Kumar refused hospitality to both Narendra Modi and Varun Gandhi.

    The national ethos is shaped by one predominant desire: the hunger for a better life. Prosperity is impossible without peace, so the passions of sectarian politics, whether based on community or caste, have been replaced by the clear understanding that peace is non-negotiable. Prosperity, on the other hand, has always been negotiable, since it has never been a universal fact. India remains a poor country with rich people rather than the other way around. The poor want to be part of the India Rising story.

    It is odd that the Marxists should have missed this. They lost the Muslim vote in rural Bengal, not because of Islam but because of poverty. The message from Nandigram and Singur was that land was being taken away from the poor in order to create jobs for the middle class. Nitish Kumar has won because he created peace, and took his promise of prosperity to those at the very bottom of the top-heavy caste ladder. He will be the envy of his peers at the next meeting of the nation's chief ministers.

    It might be even odder if one draws a potential parallel between Bengal and Gujarat, but Narendra Modi's industrialization just might become a problem if he does not take corrective action. Taking the Nano that Bengal lost is only one chapter of a more complicated story. The poor are sensing that this cosy relationship between politicians and industrialists is benefiting either the rich or the middle class. The landless and peasants could turn against Modi if he does not resurrect rural Gujarat with the high-profile vigour he has offered industry. The DMK survived in Tamil Nadu because it gave the poor cheap rice and free entertainment. Buy shares in television companies. Every political party is soon going to hand out free television sets to voters.

    The Berlin Wall has been breached in Kolkata. Is it only a matter of time before the Communist bloc collapses? Are Prakash Karat and Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee the problem or the solution? Is there any alternative chief minister in Bengal who can fashion correctives and implement them with a hammer? The CPI(M) politburo meeting on May 18 was meant to be a celebratory event in the game of thrust and parry that was supposed to follow the results. It will now have the excitement of a dirge. Prakash Karat summed up this election pithily when he said, "We failed". It was not an individual's failure, since Marxist decisions are collective.

    It is easy to sneer at the defeated, but a paradox needs to be noted. The Left may not be missed in Kerala and Bengal, but it will be missed in Delhi, since it injected serious debate into economic and foreign policies. It is not important that the Left was right or wrong. What is important is that it generated a debate.

    It is obvious that governance is being rewarded, and Naveen Patnaik's vindication is sufficient evidence. But there is also a model profile for a politician that has emerged. The voter wants three qualities in his leader: honesty, competence and modesty. This is what he saw in Dr Manmohan Singh. Rahul Gandhi added the flavour of the future to the Congress offer. He has won his place in power through this election. In all likelihood there will be a transition within the foreseeable future, particularly since the Congress has silenced its allies as effectively as it has neutered the Opposition.

    Chief ministers like Nitish Kumar, Naveen Patnaik, Shivraj Singh Chauhan and Raman Singh delivered on all three qualities respected by the voter. Others got by on two, but they should not confuse reprieve with victory.

    The dangers of success are more dramatic than the perils of failure. Complacence is an easy trap. Arrogance is seductive. Dr Manmohan Singh has been given freedom to govern, but his first watch has to be on a slippage by colleagues. By giving him freedom, the Indian voter has denied him an excuse.
     
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  3. nitesh

    nitesh Mob Control Manager Stars and Ambassadors

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    BJP is in delicate situation they really need to get there heads together and come up with a clear cut strategy (hopefully in line of Mr. vajpayee's thinking)
     
  4. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    Agree with Niteshji.

    BJP I doubt is at an existenital threat, but it is at a juncture where it has to modify its ideology. If it leaves theh hardline agenda and stops raising controversial issues such as Ram temple,etc. it will become more appealing, by adopting a hardline agenda it can either split the electorate become a power again or be relegated to the shadows. The 2009 verdict is an indication that hardline agenda won't cut it with the people.

    The Indian public suffers from a short memory, and the kind of development BJP state govts are doing if it keeps it up, cultivates some new leaders, it can hope to bounce back.

    LEFT though, imho is headed for a split, there are difference b/w the actual politicians who know the ground realities and the politburo who know great marxist literature.
     
  5. johnee

    johnee Elite Member Elite Member

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    Paaji,
    lets club all the election and its aftermath related threads. So, it will be easy to follow.

    Now coming to the point. I broadly agree with your views on BJP. And completely agree with you on Left.
    Paaji, I agree with you that BJP needs to change its tactics but I am not sure that changing their ideology will help them. Yes, they should shed their hardline. But I think they have alread shed it. Look at their last five years. What hardline issue have they raised with any passion?
    More importantly they need to convince people that they are not hardline group. For that they need media......
    Paaji, BJP raises the Ram Mandir issue only at the time of elections. Instead they should serioulsy and honestly work with different groups to fascilitate the builiding of Ram Mandir even when they are in opposition. Lets say they work with the muslim leaders to work out a way to build the mandir in non-violent method. That would fetch them lot of good will. People are fed up with BJP because it uses Mandir as a electoral issue. Instead it should show real zeal to build the ram mandir and prove its hindutva credentials.
    Lastly, BJP must never fall into a trap of becoming Congress by shedding all ideology for the sake of power. It may give them short term gain but why would people vote for BJP if it just becomes another Congress. So, it must continue to raise the issues of Majority but it must be sincere and honest about them instead of using them as electoral issue.
     
  6. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    I am of the opinion, let the status quo remain as far as the Ram Janbhoomi issue is concerned. Lets make a symbol of unity over there, a national monument.

    Lets talk of national interests.
     
  7. johnee

    johnee Elite Member Elite Member

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    Yusuf,
    Your proposal though well intentioned, is grossly unfair and unjustified. how would a pious muslim react if someone were to suggest the building of some nation monument instead of kabbah? Lord Sri Ram's birthplace is Ayodhya and there must be a Temple in this holy place. Infact, such a temple would be the true symbol of unity of India especially if the leaders of minority community take the initiative and propose an amicable solution. That would defeat any hate-monger who tries to demonise muslims at large and would work wonders in our country. There would be no more audience for the vitriolic speeches of the kind alleged on Varun Gandhi. I think its time when Hindus must come in defence of Muslims and vice versa. For that movement to start at a Mass level, building of Ram Mandir facsilitated by Muslim leaders would play a decisive role. That would over-night change the hearts of millions on both sides. That would be a symbol of love. The destruction of Babri was a symbol of Hate. The building of Ram Mandir must be a symbol of love.......
     
  8. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    First of all, the Kaaba is in its place and there are no two communities involved there.Here we are talking about a temple which was allegedly destroyed by Babur who built a mosque in its place.
    There are disputed versions of what was there and what was not. But we are using that as a pretext to divide society today and kill for it.

    So there is nothing wrong in making a national monument over there as right now there is no Mosque either over there.
     
  9. johnee

    johnee Elite Member Elite Member

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    Yusuf,
    Does that mean if Kabah is destroyed today by a foreign conquering force and it builds a monument(religious or not) there to honour their conquest. And then once the people win their freedom from the foreigner, What should they do if their is a demand/request of reconstruction of the kabah? Is it a just demand/request or not?
    Babar was a conquering foreigner and he built the mosque by destroying the Temple only to humiliate locals and announce his power. Later, that structure was not used for any religious community for a long time. It became delipidated. After that, some people were already using at as a temple by placing idols of Lord Ram. Then we all know the infamous destruction of that structure. It was truly unfortunate. But still that struture was more a symbol of Babar's conquering of India rather than a peaceful Islam. The same was said by Ghulab Nabi Azad's brother(I dont remember his name).
    Even if we dont agree with the above assumption, we can agree that Ayodhya occupies a very important place in Hinduism and muslims can gift the place as a gesture of goodwill. This is exactly wat I am trying to propose. That will lead to overnight change in attitudes across the board. Today their is a serious propaganda against Islam and muslims globally. If muslims of India were to make such a gesture, it would bring them an image make-over not just in India but all over the world.
     
  10. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    Comparing the Babri Mazjid with the Kaaba is a bit way out – from the Muslim standpoint that is.

    From the Islamic standpoint, the said Mazjid has been violated since Hindu idols are being prayed to within the confines and so defiled. Therefore, it no longer remains a Mazjid. However, it is a great emotive issue to whip up the Muslim sentiment!

    One wonders if the BJP can change its Hinduvta image since it is but an offshoot of Hindu radical thoughts and organisation from which it garners support. Likewise, there can be no comparison between AVB and LKA. One was a team builder, while the other is an ideologue, even if he did praise Jinnah! One was charismatic and the other a jaded stuffed shirt! And Rajnath Singh is a surly, cow belt gruff, who has no leadership to show! Therefore, how can BJP win? Modi? He is accepted as a great administrator India over, but rightly or wrongly, the Gujarat riot scares the people!

    I will be frank. The Indian Muslims are the ones who fuel the BJP. Idiots like Shabana Azmi states that Muslims are not accepted in Hindu housing colonies. Hey! The Gujarati vegetarians in Calcutta do not accept fish eating Bengalis in their housing colony!! Imagine Gujaratis doing apartheid in Bengal against Bengalis! Obviously, Bengalis would think that Shabana Azmi is talking through the wrong orifice! It sure gets peoples’ goat, the same way Simi Garewal was taking on when she mistook Islamic flags for Pakistani flags! Yet, on the other hand, we have people like Nasserudin Shah who said on TV that one does not have to flaunt his religion’s symbol to needle the others!!

    Varun Gandhi went berserk (if the tapes are right). No one buys that. Yes, he has won. It is not because of his speech, but because Indians have a high sense of justice wherein Mayawati threw the book of law and very unjustly too. He could and should have been booked but not on something that is ridiculous and unfair and Mayawati is known for her vengeance. He won a sympathy vote. Yet, at the same time, the EC is no one to declare as to who should be a candidate and who should not be. They sure went beyond their brief! All this worked for his win!

    In Bengal the Left lost because of Islam in pockets where there were Muslim majority. Mamata Bannerje having distanced her party from the BJP and she projected herself as a messiah, won the Muslims to her side. Nandigram is an example as also Calcutta North, where the charismatic Muslim leader of the CPM, Md Salim lost to the Trinoomool candidate! And it had a huge Muslim voter population!!

    INC is no answer to India. We cannot have a monarchy even if it is faked as a democracy. I cannot understand how a Sikh (and they are a proud race) can state that a chit of a boy like Rahul Gandi can be a PM. Kohli is a wimp and indeed he is weak Joe. He kowtows to the Gandhis and to the US Bush too! He whines even when he is happy! Funny leader! He is warming the seat for Rahul Gandi.

    India has no political party worthy of leading it!
     
  11. johnee

    johnee Elite Member Elite Member

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    Ray Sir,
    Like always, its difficult to disagree with your point because your totally straightforward and honest.:113:

    But a small correction: I was not comparing Kabah to Babri. I would never do that, since some muslims themselves dont consider that structure mosque. I was infact, comparing Ayodhya to Mecca and Ram Mandir to Kabah to get my point across. No offence meant.........
     
  12. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    I dont want to get into the religion thing, but just for your reference, the existence of a temple in that place and its destruction is disputed in history. That there was a mosque is true.

    Besides who represents all the muslims of India to decide to settle the issue and who represents the hindus? I dont think the BJP can stake claim just because it has been clamoring for it.
    We also dont know if all the hindus even know of the history and want a temple there or not.
     
  13. K Factor

    K Factor A Concerned Indian Senior Member

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    Yusuf, as Hindu, I personally dont care if they build a temple in Ayodhya or not. Whether they build the country or not is the question. You cannot contest an election, with your primar objective being "building a ram mandir". That is where the BJP flopped. Time for a strategy rethink for BJP.

    We can see Gujarat as an example. The reason BJP has retained it is due to the good work Modi has put in, same goes for Nitish in Bihar. Most people nowadays see through this religion thingy.

    However, I have only couple of major point points against the congress, 1. Its caste politics with the 49.5% reservation. 2. It calls itself secular, what was 1984, and why is Tytler still free?

    IMO, BJP doesn't face an existential threat, the Left does.
     
  14. F-14

    F-14 Global Defence Moderator Senior Member

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    what about an new salution why dont we make both the mosque and t the temple side by side we have it here in dubai
     
  15. johnee

    johnee Elite Member Elite Member

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    Who represents muslims? The same people who try to highlight the greviences of that community. Any Muslim! If enough muslims SPEAK UP for the cause then it means they support the cause. The muslim intellectuals, MPs, MLAs, film actors......etc. These are the people who represent the community. Infact, everyone represents the community in some way. You represent it. So, if you were to be ready to accept a Ram Mandir at Ayodhya, thats a start........:wink:

    As, for the dispute, does it really matter. It is clear that almost all Indians(of any religion) accept that Ram Mandir existed in Ayodhya. Anyway, if there is doubt that can be verified by a historical survey of the place. But my point is larger, I am talking of confidence building among the different communities and how a Ram Mandir would do the trick.

    Does BJP represent Hindus? A good question. Exactly what I am trying to point out. BJP has been staking the claim to represent Hindus, but it has not solved any issue. So, If BJP does fascillitate in construction of Ram Mandir, then its claim will be validated.......
    So, it is not about being the representative to solve the issue, but its the other way around. Solve the isssue and become the representative.
     
  16. K Factor

    K Factor A Concerned Indian Senior Member

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    That would be really nice, (also, like Bollywood movies :D)
     
  17. F-14

    F-14 Global Defence Moderator Senior Member

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    i agree with Kommunist on the Congress Point all they have done is to make india in to a Reservation crazy state and the Biggest Bais of all the 84 Anti shik Riots alll are crying to put modiji to the gallows what about Tytler is he a saint he has blood on his hands of innocent Shiks and because of that the Congress is providing raw fuel for the Shik ressentment to grow
     
  18. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    Right.

    The topic of the thread also mentions the Left on the crossroad as well. Some light on that as well people?
     
  19. F-14

    F-14 Global Defence Moderator Senior Member

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    the Left in india is an Image of a Broken Family I personal being from a Let Ruled State (Kerala) hate them they behave like small children and backbite each other and dont even get me started on the Development side of things the so called "development" is there for every one to see
    and they are very Hipocratical and Double sided people and always use their fav tag line " we are doinging it for the people" and another factor to consider is that true leftism did exist in in india with Valiant leaders like AKG EMS and EKji who sluged it out fot the people but all that is gone now all the so called " Commardes" are Cyptocapitalist i think that we have all the makings of a big split comming up(Not the Banana Split) lets wait and watch
     
  20. K Factor

    K Factor A Concerned Indian Senior Member

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    The man behind the left's demise is Mr. Prakash Karat. The mn who has lived in Delhi in his AC room, not contested the elections, doesn't know the pulse of the people's feelings, is the CPM Gen Secy, and wanted o be PM. Other Left leaders are responsible too, for letting this stupid man be the Party Chief.
     
  21. F-14

    F-14 Global Defence Moderator Senior Member

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    add to the disallutionment of many old heads and the petty bekering within the PB the CPIM is destined to losse its grip even futher
     

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