Friendly match

Discussion in 'Politics & Society' started by sasi, Nov 8, 2014.

  1. sasi

    sasi Senior Member Senior Member

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    Last night (7 November) one waited eagerly for fireworks to erupt asHeadlines Todaylined up two finance ministers - one present and one past - to spar in what was billed as "The Clash of Titans". Organised in the context of a book on the 2014 Lok Sabha elections - a cracker of an election - by journalist Rajdeep Sardesai, the battle turned out to be a friendly sparring match between Arun Jaitley and his predecessor P Chidambaram.
    Both were apparently a bit nervous, given that the journo anchoring the show was Karan Thapar, who is not known to beat around the bush or try and be too soft on anyone. While Jaitley sat through the debate with a near-perpetual frown on his face, Chidambaram appeared cool, but underneath the easy façade he was often seen restlessly flapping his fingers.
    Much was expected from the verbal bout, as both men are articulate and masters of the art of the debate. But the "Clash of the Titans" turned out to be a pillow-fight on a mattress between Tweedledum and Tweedledee. If Chidambaram had been the current finance minister and Jaitley that of the UPA, you wouldn't know the difference. Both of them tried hard to avoid punching the other anywhere it hurts, and the occasional mistimed jab was quickly deflected.
    Jaitley set the tone for non-lethal sparring when he denied saying he had inherited an economy in "shambles". He refused to accept the word and said he meant he had inherited a "challenging" situation - which a happy Chidambaram was glad to concede, pointing out he too had inherited a challenging economy in 2004.
    Even when the anchor repeated the word "shambles" to goad Jaitley into the ring, he jumped out of it into a non-combat zone. He weakly tried to counter Chidambaram by saying the Vajpayee government had left behind a fast-growing economy, but his opponent deflected this minor thrust by saying he inherited an economy that grew at an “average” of about 5-5.5 percent. By talking averages, Chidambaram also cleverly avoided having to acknowledge the reality of the legacy he himself left behind: an economy that was growing below 5 percent in the last two years of his stewardship of North Block. Chidambaram was too clever for Jaitley in this round.
    Overall, Chidambaram won on points, and quite clearly his mastery of words and experience of running the finance ministry for nearly a decade (over three different periods) and by presenting nine budgets, showed through. Jaitley is nobody’s fool, but his unwillingness to wound or confront his opponent showed him up as relatively less experienced novice.
    If the economic debate was insipid, the political part of it elicited more than passing interest, and here Chidambaram offered views that made the headlines today(8 November). Manmohan Singh, he said, could have stopped A Raja from issuing the telecom licences (later cancelled by the Supreme Court), but Jaitley failed to point out Chidambaram’s own role in the 2G spectrum controversy.
    In a letter to the PMO in mid-January 2008, just days after Raja went ahead and issued the 2G licences, Chidambaram himself suggested that Raja's allotment of spectrum at 2001 prices should be treated as a "closed chapter."Nor did Jaitley point out that the spectrum could have been cancelled even till end-February. In fact, a later note from Pranab Mukherjee’s finance ministrysaid both Manmohan Singh and Chidambaram could have stopped Raja. Raman Kirpal wrote in Firstpost at that time:“Both Chidambaram and Manmohan Singh were in position to stop Raja from signing the deals as the latter had only issued 122 letters of intent (LOIs) on 10 January 2008. The licences were still to be given. But given the silence of the Prime Minister, Raja went on signing licence agreements on the basis of the 122 LOIs even a month after Chidambaram's note to the Prime Minister.”
    Jaitley also failed to point out that Chidambaram himself cleared the high-premium sale of shares by Swan Telecom and Unitech to foreign partners when their only asset was the cheap spectrum allotted by Raja. This clearly established the fact that spectrum was sold for a song – and thus the Raja decisionprima faciemala fide.
    Quite clearly, Jaitley was unwilling to take the fight to Chidambaram, and the latter won by default.
    Even on the issue of retrospective taxation of Vodafone, another UPA legacy, Jaitley took a blow to the head and failed to give it back. When the anchor pointed out a claim in Sardesai's book that Pranab Mukherjee introduced the retrospective tax almost without consulting Manmohan Singh, Chidambaram got away by saying he was in the home ministry at that time, and made a general observation that the budget is usually decided between the PM and the FM, with the rest of the cabinet having almost no role to play in it.
     
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  3. sasi

    sasi Senior Member Senior Member

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    Chidambaram even claimed the high ground by saying that if had had 282 seats in parliament, as the BJP did now, he would have repealed the retrospective law. Jaitley said little, embarrassed by this point, but he could have asked why Chidambaram didn't do so when he had the chance in 2013. It is not as if the UPA had a problem with passing any budget in any of its 10 years in power. Jaitley allowed him to get away with the claim that he could not change the law in the 2013 budget as he would have been accused of selling out to Vodafone. This is, of course, hogwash. Chidambaram planned to push key proposals through even in the 2014 interim budget. It wasn’t as if he could not have modified the retrospective tax without a majority in parliament.
    To make matters worse, Chidambaram even rubbed it inby congratulating Jaitley for asking the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) to stop making sensational statements, saying this advice to the CAG was good though it had come a bit late. By making this statement to a CAG conference, Jaitley effectively allowed the Congress party – which has always been anti-CAG for showing up its lapses in CWG, 2G and Coalgate – to claim victory.
    What the debate proved was that there was very little to choose between Chidambaram's world view and Jaitley's, and that both are part of the Delhi insider consensus on economic policy and centrist politics. Neither wanted to show up the other, thus giving credence to the oft-repeated claim that the NDA was little more than UPA with “saffron lipstick” – the latter remark being made on Swaminathan Anklesaria Aiyar in the context of Jaitley’s 2014-15 budget last July.
    In many ways, Jaitley has been Narendra Modi’s go-to man. He has been the most powerful minister in the cabinet (a position that could change with defence now set to go to Manohar Parrikar) both because he has been a strong defender of Modi in regard to 2002, and also because he is Modi’s channel to Delhi’s elite.
    But this is a double-edged sword. Jaitley’s acceptability in Delhi’s power elite both helps and hinders Modi’s agenda of bringing about a change in power structure. It helps by giving Modi an inside access to Jaitley’s connections, but it probably hinders more by making the NDA seem like nothing more than UPA with more effective Prime Minister.
    If the attractiveness of Modi to voters is that he is an outsider to Delhi and can thus be trusted to uproot the old cosy Delhi consensus and shake things up, Jaitley is his Achilles Heel. He is part of the old establishment in more ways than one.


    In Tweedledum Vs Tweedledee, Jaitley gave the game away to Chidambaram - Firstbiz
     
  4. anoop_mig25

    anoop_mig25 Senior Member Senior Member

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    Well AJ and some of them are part of Torjan horse.

    I doubt with them in power Modi gov can do anything

    Thanks for posting

    Now its clear come any gov in future reforms are not going to be happen.... Which party may be in power....

    Reforms would only happen when there would be another crisi like 90`s

    till then both our grand old party (whoever be in power) would say we are trying to reach consesnus on throng issues

    When BJP in oppostion they and other oppose reforms

    When congress in opposition they and other party oppose reforms
     
  5. anoop_mig25

    anoop_mig25 Senior Member Senior Member

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    Well AJ and some of them are part of Torjan horse.

    I doubt with them in power Modi gov can do anything

    Thanks for posting

    Now its clear come any gov in future reforms are not going to be happen.... Which party may be in power....

    Reforms would only happen when there would be another crisi like 90`s

    till then both our grand old party (whoever be in power) would say we are trying to reach consesnus on throny issues

    When BJP in oppostion they and other oppose reforms

    When congress in opposition they and other party oppose reforms
     
  6. sasi

    sasi Senior Member Senior Member

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    leave Aj,here sm-

    Saswati Sarkar @ sarkar_swati 32m
    Hard 4 Modi supporters 2 believe that he was in regular touch with Rajdeep, while they were tweeting about his bias relentlessly!

    Namrata Dixit @ dixitnamrata 1h
    @Vamsee9002 @sarkar_swatithey talked frequently during campaign this year and RS mentions, Modi always returns calls even by midnight. 2/2

    ps-reform side,there will be some! We fight over them in public forums!
     
  7. sasi

    sasi Senior Member Senior Member

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  8. Eesh

    Eesh Regular Member

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    Had UPA, PC thrown in, done a lot many things, they could have got 350 seats. But they did not and could not.
     
  9. Ancient Indian

    Ancient Indian Unplugged Version Senior Member

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    @sasi
    Stop seeing the world in black and white!
    Can you point out any other person in NDA who can take Modi missile to the center of all the real power except Jaitly?
    He is a good sidekick. They won't come under the category of good or bad.
    He is so similar to Chiddu where he got good boss while Chiddu-kun has several shadow and bad bosses.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 10, 2015
  10. anoop_mig25

    anoop_mig25 Senior Member Senior Member

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    I doubt what he could have done and what MMS could not do...

    The issue is not with PC-MMS but with gandhi`s itself

    Untill and Unless gandhi`s give support for issue nobody in congress in PM`s chair can do anything

    Look at Indo-us deal how at last moment of his gov durning UPA-1 gandhi`s supported MMS while for whole 2-hald hears they where trying to palacte left.

    same has to be case with other issues where instaed of left SG kitchen cabinet NAC was playing role
     
  11. anoop_mig25

    anoop_mig25 Senior Member Senior Member

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    I would really take what SD is telling with pitch of salt.i really doubt his claim they he was in touch i mean one side he was badmouthing Modi on electronic media and on other side he was in contact.Uless and untill other side responds we cannot verify and this case othe side is not going to respond
     
  12. sasi

    sasi Senior Member Senior Member

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    well Aj is there,modi's man!
     
  13. sasi

    sasi Senior Member Senior Member

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    well let us see the action! Then we can judge!

    Ps-when Aj go to speak abt blackmoney in ndtv which involved in money laundering with pc. Wht can i say!
    Most of these views are bjp-people. Some of them helped bjp in preparing bm document. Some of pro bjp journos!
     
  14. anoop_mig25

    anoop_mig25 Senior Member Senior Member

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    Not only black money but i was taking of all other issues like land acquistion or environment clearance or etc where all this congress minister where busy impressing NAC/NGO hoping to please gandhi`s

    And business started complaning then u had xyz misiter removed .

    i am too waiting for action on black money ....

    let see how SC mointored SIT performs ......

    on other now it would be convient for political parties to balme SC if progress doesnt happens
     
  15. SLASH

    SLASH Senior Member Senior Member

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    India has come a long way from socialist economy to a more centrist economy. After Rajeev Gandhi this is the first government to get a full majority on its own. The results from the state election would mean that their Rajya Sabha numbers will also improve. Whether the opposition parties oppose or not, if the government wants to go ahead with the reforms it can, and nobody can stop it. What they are waiting for is to get better numbers in the Rajya Sabha, so that the bills can be passed for easily without comprising on other issues.
     

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