Cong vs. Narendra Modi: Who is falling into whose trap?

Discussion in 'Politics & Society' started by Ray, Jul 21, 2013.

  1. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    Cong vs. Narendra Modi: Who is falling into whose trap?


    by Abhay Vaidya

    Whether Narendra Modi wins or loses the grand electoral battle of the 2014 general elections, what demands attention is his attempt to trigger a major paradigm shift in Indian politics.

    The Gujarat chief minister and BJP’s Chief Poll Campaigner for the 2014 elections is not just attempting to decisively win over non-Muslim voters but go beyond into hitherto uncharted waters. Given the RSS-BJP blood flowing through his veins, seeking to unite and consolidate Hindu votes is a given. That was something that even the BJP patriarch LK Advani attempted with the Rath Yatra in 1990. What Modi is attempting today is to focus on redefining secularism in India as it has been preached and practised for decades in Indian politics.

    If you closely examine all of his utterances including the “puppy remark” that provoked a backlash, this highly polarizing leader is sending across a central message: That while being a nationalist (accidentally, a Hindu one at that), he does not believe in compartmentalising this country into Hindus and non-Hindus but wants to instead, carry everyone together in the same boat.

    This, according to Modi is the true definition of secularism, where politics means development and progress for all, and favouritism towards none. This is the underlying message in practically everything that Modi has said or done in recent years.
    After having failed to nail him for complicity in the 2002 post-Godhra riots, all of Modi’s critics and opponents have been clamouring for just one thing from him: “The least that we want Modi to do is express remorse over the killing of Muslims in the riots”, is their cry.

    If you closely examine all of his utterances including the “puppy remark” that provoked a backlash,he is sending across a central message:AFP
    Any sensible person would think that is a fair expectation. Modi could not have missed out on the fact that he had an extraordinary opportunity to finally reach out to the Muslims- and silence his critics- through the recent Reuters interview that grabbed the headlines.
    A veteran politician like Modi could not have been blind to the opportunity that this interview afforded. He would have clearly anticipated the familiar questions that would be put forth on the post-Godhra riots, his view on Muslims and his definition of nationalism and secularism. The thrust of his replies would have been framed and ready in his mind during the interview. Even the Reuters reporters Ross Colvin and Satarupa Bhattacharjya say as much in their interview: “At times, Modi appeared tense, though not defensive. He chose his words carefully, especially when talking about his role in the 2002 riots (italics for emphasis).”

    Thus, one can well imagine that the “puppy remark” was not a spur-of-the-moment response but intentional. In spite of being interviewed on a neutral, credible and international platform like Reuters, Modi refused to express remorse- or apologise- for the loss of Muslim lives during the riots, as was expected of him.

    What he implied with his controversial remark was that when even the death of a puppy under a car’s wheels brings grief, imagine the distress that any person would feel by the loss of human lives in the 2002 riots. Modi stuck to his “one nation – one people” theme and did not mention any particular community that had been traumatized by the episode. This seems to be the key to Modi’s Muslim conundrum: No matter how much criticism is heaped on him, Modi will not express regret for the loss of members of any particular community.

    The Sadbhavana yatras (mission of goodwill and harmony) that he undertook with one-day fasts in 36 districts of Gujarat during 2011-12, a decade after the Godhra incidents, was the closest that he came to addressing the wounds of 2002. Once again, he chose to reach out to all Gujaratis, including Muslims, through this yatra.

    In his speeches at these events, Modi repeatedly described his approach as ‘collective efforts’ and ‘inclusive growth’.

    His refusal to wear the Muslim skull cap offered by a cleric during one such rally sparked a controversy; although at the same event, he had accepted a green coloured shawl with Islamic verses on it. If Narendra Modi wore a skull cap as is routinely done by Rahul Gandhiand other leaders, especially during the Iftar gatherings at Eid, how would he be able to differentiate himself and his brand of secularism from that of the Congress?

    As a part of his strategy, Modi has been trying to reach out to the young generation with considerable success. As was the case with his address to students at the SRCC College, Delhi in February, 2013, his public rally in Pune was attended by a largely young audience as also his speech at the Fergusson College.

    This was followed by his address at a youth rally in Hyderabad on Tuesday. A well-planned phase-1 of Modi’s poll strategy seems to have rolled out while Rahul Gandhi’s young brigade seems to be missing in action.

    There is a common thread flowing through Modi’s speeches, echoing what he said at the Sadbhavana rallies in Gujarat in 2011-12: He attacks the Congress and her allies for what he calls “divide and rule secularism” based on appeasing castes and religions.

    His approach, in contrast, says Modi, is to promote inclusive growth through economic development that benefits all irrespective of their caste or religion. Modi then cites his successes in Gujarat, while not forgetting to attack the UPA for its string of corruption scams.


    On the other hand, the Congress and the UPA have focused their attack on Modi as anti-Muslim, anti-secular and as the kingpin of the post-Godhra riots in 2002. He is now being blasted for the Ishrat Jahan and other encounter killings by the Gujarat police.
    So who is falling in whose trap?

    Is Modi falling into the Congress’s trap by allowing the Congress to reinforce his anti-Muslim, anti-secular image? Or is the Congress falling into Modi’s trap by giving him the benefit of headlines day after day and by allowing him to point out that the Congress has no choice but to appease minority vote banks?

    Modi, by virtue of image and association with the Sangh parivar, has no claims to Muslim votes although he has been trying to convey that he means no harm. A master strategist who has already embarked on the first round of his campaign trail, Modi has a platter of offerings for all: This includes the Ram Janmabhoomi agenda for hardcore RSS-BJP followers; good governance, inclusive development and economic growth for urban and rural audiences, and talk of modernisation versus westernisation to the youth.

    Amidst all this, his central message is that of equality for all and appeasement of none in Indian politics.

    This is the paradigm shift that Modi is attempting and this is the quicksand that the Congress and her allies are likely to walk into.
    There are many claimants for the Muslim vote across India and as the elections approach, political parties will try and outdo one another in reaching out to the general electorate and especially the minorities. As Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar’s adviser, author and ex-diplomat Pavan K Varma pointed out in a recent article, “One-fourth of Kerala is Muslim; 30% of West Bengal is Muslim; every fourth person in Assam is Muslim; 30 million Muslims live in UP; some 15 million in Bihar; every ninth resident of Karnataka is Muslim.”

    Every time the Congress, her allies and the other parties bend backwards to win these votes by offering sops to demonstrate their secular credentials, Modi will have a point to score.

    The time has come to shift Indian politics from caste and religion and deliver good governance, development and economic growth that will benefit the smallest man on the street, irrespective of his caste and religion. Ironically, it is Narendra Modi who is found speaking this language.

    http://www.firstpost.com/politics/cong-vs-narendra-modi-who-is-falling-into-whose-trap-961705.html


    ************************

    Posted without comments.

    Let the discussion begin!
     
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  3. JBH22

    JBH22 Senior Member Senior Member

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    At this rate I wonder if India as we know it will continue to exist in the foreseeable future.
     
  4. iNDiAN.96

    iNDiAN.96 Nationalist Senior Member

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    Read this interesting comment on the article page:

     
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  5. stoned_blasphemer

    stoned_blasphemer Regular Member

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    The development stories are not all lies, some of them are true, some are PR. But the truth is that Modi is grossly overrated. There is noting special in growth story of gujarat, many other states are comparable and some better. But yes, some progress is there.

    But all that is negated by the shameful human development factors in Gujarat. Human development in Gujarat is one of the worst in the country, both industrial and human development are supposed to go together.

    Moreover, you can't put faith in a country's progress in a single person. The whole society, the system has to change. Managing Gujarat and managing nation are different things.

    This doesn't mean I support congress. I will support my local leader who I think is the most capable. Everyone should vote for the person who they think are good for the country. But make informed decisions.
     
  6. The Messiah

    The Messiah Bow Before Me! Elite Member

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  7. arnabmit

    arnabmit Homo Communis Indus Senior Member

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    How do you calculate Modi's performance in HDI progress when the last HDI data available from the Planning Commission is from 2001, before Modi became CM?

    Planning Commission, Government of India

    If there are any later reports, please share.

    Please watch from 11:30 onward till 21:50...

    [video=youtube_share;buQQFIAwhnM]http://youtu.be/buQQFIAwhnM[/video]

     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2013
  8. VIP

    VIP Ultra Nationalist Senior Member

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    What?? One of the worst ?? LoL, it stands at 11 which is very fair ahead of Karnataka, AP,WB,etc big states.
    Only big states are ahead in HDI than Gujarat are Maha & Tamilnadu. Remaining states are very small small states like Kerala, Delhi,HP,Goa,Punjab and 2 big surprise...... North Eastern states and J&K.

    I hope you & people who liked your comment actually understand how HDI actually counted and how it can be improved.

    @2nd bold.....what an irony....On 1 side you say 1 person can't do anything and on other side I would support my local leader....

    What are you people upto ?? Will Modi alone do everything?? Even in Gujarat he doesn't do work alone. It's always about team work.

    Can congress match to BJP when it comes to team work ?? Remember right now who's Super PM and How she works....Also remember the role of NAC and the people who are appointed in it.

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  9. VIP

    VIP Ultra Nationalist Senior Member

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    If anyone who understands this HDI then he can easily point out why these small states are ahead and why Maha & Tamilnadu is ahead.

    1. Because of low population
    2. Kerala can take over easily on the basis of Adult Literacy Rate which is fairly high since our independence.
    3. Big states like Maha, Tamilnadu, Gujarat are ahead because of GDP rate which is replaced by GNI which is fairly high in these states.
    4. Maha & Tamilnadu are ahead because they were ahead of Gujarat before Modi took over in GDP after Modi took over, Gujarat competed them very fairly and so now Karnataka falls behind Gujarat.
    5. Migration rate....Maha, Gujarat see very very higher rate of migration from other states, period. Don't know about TN buy I don't think anyone will ever wants to move HP,Kerala,Goa(this is an exception due to other aspect lol but I'll count it in), Haryana,etc.
    Delhi is obviously ahead despite having high migration rate because it's the capital, it also has fair percentage of educated people and it also has very good institutes.
    6. HDI is very complicated thing and it can't be changed within 5 years of tenure. ( data available is of 2008 ).
    7. Except GDP, other factors mostly depends on people themselves, government has role but people have greater role in aspects.



    A bit not acceptable but I would make this point for sure. Gujarat sees very high migration rate, not in terms of importing, in terms of exporting lol.
    2nd point, if you counts only pure Gujju people, I think Gujarat can do better but you can say same thing about Maha and Marathis.

    http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Indian_states_and_territories_by_Human_Development_Index

    You people can see why 7th point.
    And when it comes to India as whole, we are far more behind then other countries and if I guess we didn't make progress, our rank may be decreased.

    J&K and North-Eastern states which are ahead then Gujarat which is an indicator why we should not consider RANKING as per HDI when it comes to development......

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    Last edited: Jul 22, 2013
  10. Black Cats

    Black Cats Regular Member

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    The more he talks ….
    Vidya Subrahmaniam July 22, 2013


    Narendra Modi has been celebrated for his clarity of vision and powerful oratory. But lately he has begun to look like a wordsmith who trips on his own words

    The more Narendra Modi talks, the more he keeps a whole lot of folks busy: Television debaters who have to decode what he said; Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) spokespersons who have to contort themselves out of shape to defend him; bloggers and social media junkies who have to give up sleep to tweet, blog and get creative with jokes and eulogies; and political commentators who have to struggle to keep pace with the NaMo controversies.

    Up until now, NaMo has held his audiences spellbound with his oratory. From the India Today conclave attended by high society folks to the many lectures to the young and trendy at college functions, the BJP’s Prime Ministerial-aspirant has been a hit on the lecture circuit. The speeches and audience behaviour have followed a pattern: a fantastic assemblage of facts and figures on Gujarat followed by standing ovation and exclamations of delight at India finally finding its saviour — a politician with brains, charisma and administrative acumen.

    Reuters interview

    But Mr. Modi’s last two outings have got even the admirers scratching their heads because the smart man who enticed with a miasma of words has been shown to be unsmart in the way he used words. The Kutte ka bachcha (puppy) reference in his Reuters interview was a bad analogy made worse by the BJP’s defence that it showed his compassion towards all living things. Secondly, how does that phrase make for an answer to a specific question on whether he regretted the 2002 anti-Muslim violence?

    If anything, Mr. Modi’s answer to the question shows this: he is in his elements when addressing the converted, but unsure and evasive when forced to come out of that comfort zone — and this despite the easy ride given to him by the Reuters correspondents. Mr. Modi answered the violence question in two parts. He said the Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team (SIT) had given him a “clean chit” in the 2002 violence, thereby equating the SIT with the Supreme Court. The interviewers did not cross question him on this nor did they point out that a court in Gujarat is currently hearing a protest petition against the SIT report.

    The second part of the answer was dodgier still. To quote: “Another thing, any person if we are driving a car, we are a driver, and someone else is driving a car and we are sitting behind, even then if a puppy comes under the wheel, will it be painful or not?... If I’m a chief minister or not, I’m a human being. If something bad happens anywhere, it is natural to be sad.”

    The answer changed from “we are driving a car” to “we are a driver” to “someone else is driving a car.” Is it a Freudian slip that he first said he was driving the car, and then changed to “sitting behind” when he realised the implications? The inference is difficult to avoid in the context of the 2002 violence.

    This is one question for which he should have been prepared and yet he wasn’t. The bit about “something bad” happening “anywhere,” is so problematic that it had the usually cocksure Ravi Shankar Prasad fidgeting for a way out. On a show with Karan Thapar, the BJP spokesperson protested over and over that anything bad happening “anywhere” would sadden Mr. Modi. “Can’t you see that he said ‘anywhere’?” he asked in anguish. Unfortunately for Mr. Modi and Mr. Prasad, the question was not about “anywhere.” The Reuters hacks were not measuring Mr. Modi’s compassion levels for awful things happening to people all over the world. They wanted to know if he felt any regret for 2002. Mr. Modi could have said he had been cleared by the SIT and he was confident of eventually being cleared by the Supreme Court. He could have argued that despite his administration’s best efforts there was violence which he regretted.

    But of course, if he had said that, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) would have come after him with a sledgehammer. That the RSS is setting the direction for Mr. Modi is clear from the “burqa of secularism” accusation he hurled at the Congress at a college event that followed the Reuters interview. Why burqa and why not a more neutral piece of garment such as ghunghat (veil in Hindi)? Obviously because burqa is Islamic. If there was doubt on who the target was, it was cleared by a Shiv Sena spokesperson who said at a TV discussion that the usual way to bring a criminal out in public was to wrap him in a burqa.

    As 2014 draws nearer

    The problem is going to get worse in the coming days because Mr. Modi is attempting to fuse hard Hindutva with an image overhaul ahead of 2014. The silk and chiffon crowd that has been hearing him out at corporate galas might worship him but it is unlikely to want its superhero to come as a package deal with the scrappy Bajrang Dal. And hence the simultaneous wooing of Muslims by Mr. Modi. However, the contradictions are too glaring to be papered over by his usual skill with words.

    In any case, a careful listener of Mr. Modi’s speeches will know that often he just throws words and ideas around. One example is his suggestion at the India Today conclave that the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme be renamed the Mahatma Gandhi Development Guarantee scheme. The reasoning he offered was that while the former implied the beneficiary was in poverty, the latter made her a participant in national development. Predictably, the proposal was received with ear-splitting applause. But laws have to be clear and specific about what they want to achieve. If the aim is to guarantee jobs, the title has to reflect it. Changing jobs to development makes no sense. By this yardstick, the Food Security Bill will have to be renamed Happiness Bill.

    More claims

    So with a whole lot of claims about Gujarat. Speaking at a college meet in Delhi, Mr. Modi said Gujarat was a leading producer of milk and supplied milk to Delhi. Figures put out by the National Dairy Development Council show that Gujarat is the fifth largest producer of milk in India. And yes, Amul milk does service parts of Delhi but Mr. Modi actually fought with that great Amul man, Verghese Kurien. The Gujarat Chief Minister said Gujarat sent okra to Europe. I could not locate the statistics for this. However, I learnt that okra is consumed largely by Indians in Europe. Secondly, according to the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (APECA), which functions under the Union Ministry of Commerce, Gujarat is the fifth largest producer of okra. APECA also said it had sanctioned Agri Export Zones in six States, including Gujarat.

    Mr. Modi insists that for him secularism is “India First.” Will any political party say that it believes in “India last”? He has a way with words but words have a way of spinning out of control.


    Link - The more he talks …. - The Hindu
     
  11. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    I wonder if Modi is such a naive person as to not choose his words careful and with thought as the Hindu reporter would want us to believe.

    I think he said those words so as to raise a huge controversy and keep himself in the limelight by giving ample ammunition to the media and others to keep him in the news for a long time.

    He requires to keep himself the talk of the town so that the nation is focussed on him, on his development issues, on his 'opportunity for all appeasement to none' et al and thereby project to the national audience that he has actually a larger than life persona while others around, to include the Opposition and even the BJP stalwarts, are but pygmies in comparison.

    That he has been able to build up and sustain this persona could not have been better exemplified than the humbling, if not crushing, of the Iron Man and Patriarch Advani!

    He is not that simple a rustic as the champagne sipping, diamond oozing drawing room class of the Metros and their newspaper hirelings would like to believe.

    The man indeed is a good, if not crafty, political strategist and tactician.
     
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  12. VIP

    VIP Ultra Nationalist Senior Member

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    LoL, who's this idiot...?? What kind of chu argument s/he's making lol. Very short sighted, far from the reality, on every point or should I say on every word, trying to put idiotic thoughts. And it's coming from The (Un)Hindu. Grow Up.....

    I have yet to see single article which gives me proper insight that Modi's vision is far from practicality.

    And I have yet to see single article bashing Gandhis for messing this country from core. All I can see is bashing of UPA as whole. But nobody takes single pot shot at Sonia Gandhi & Rahul Gandhi. Yes, I can see articles floating around how Sonia is UNHAPPY with blah blah blah....

    Why this bias ?? Why everyone is only judging Modi ?? Why nobody's judging Sonia Gandhi ?? She's the undoubtedly Super PM, why nobody's judging Rahul Gandhi,too ??

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  13. anoop_mig25

    anoop_mig25 Senior Member Senior Member

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    Ok i think BJP is walking in Traps of congreess

    Why because people here forgets that muslims votes for that party which can defeat bjp or other communal party.

    Now at center level only congress is ans to BJP so I think particularly in UP and Bihar Congress is going to get muslims votes rather then it getting scattered among different parties
     
  14. VIP

    VIP Ultra Nationalist Senior Member

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    No, that's not true. Why these parties are trying to win Muslim votes ?? Because they vote en mass. And I don't think SP, RJD,BSP will let congress get them.

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  15. anoop_mig25

    anoop_mig25 Senior Member Senior Member

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    Yes they vote enmass true but its also true that they vote for party which is capable of defeating BJP/communal party.or which can keep BJP out of power

    And in case of lok sabha it would be congress and not sp/bsp/rjd/jdu.

    Thats why congress is raking issue of communalism rather then goverance
     
  16. VIP

    VIP Ultra Nationalist Senior Member

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    We'll see that, I'm not sure your fear will be true, because trends of last 2 LS elections don't go by your theory.

    Congress is trying to polarize votes against Modi, not in favor of Congress.

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  17. anoop_mig25

    anoop_mig25 Senior Member Senior Member

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    Can u prove your point ... Because i think last lok sabha election results of UP prove otherwise
     
  18. VIP

    VIP Ultra Nationalist Senior Member

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    BSP and SP got the major part of pie in last LS election, congress got lesser seats than them. BJP got 58 seats in 2004. That's called huge. If BJP manages to win even 30-40 seats, it would be huge for them this time but no way it can touch that 58 number again.

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  19. anoop_mig25

    anoop_mig25 Senior Member Senior Member

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    In 2009 LS election sp got 23 seats,congress got 21 seats,bsp got 21 and BJP came last with 15 seats of which 5 belong to RLD while congress was fighting alone in UP

    In 2004 for BJP it was 11 from where are u quoting 58 seats
     
  20. VIP

    VIP Ultra Nationalist Senior Member

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    Sorry, not in 2004 lol, in 1999. My bad. You see, those numbers, all 3 parties got more or less same seats. That's why truespirit said BJP needs to focus on Hindutva here, not development. UP people don't follow that mantra. I hope BJP gets around 30 seats, very very tough but even around 25 would be good.

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