How Dhaka sees the Modi juggernaut

Discussion in 'Foreign Relations' started by Ray, May 8, 2014.

  1. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    How Dhaka sees the Modi juggernaut

    Syed Badrul Ahsan
    The worry is that land boundary demarcation and Teesta water-sharing could get more complicated.

    India’s general elections are the talk of the town in Bangladesh. At no other time in the past has an election across the border generated as much interest as the one whose results will not be in before May 16. Yes, back in 1977, Bangladesh’s people, then reeling under the country’s first military dictatorship led by General Ziaur Rahman, were more amazed than shocked at the defeat of the Congress by the Janata Party at India’s first post-Emergency election. Again, in May 2011, large numbers of Bangladeshis were unhappy at the defeat of the Left Front in the West Bengal assembly elections, which brought Mamata Banerjee and her Trinamool Congress to power.

    This time round though, Bangladeshis’ interest in India’s general elections is defined by a core question: Will Narendra Modi actually end up being India’s prime minister? And that question is followed quickly by another: How will a Modi government handle issues with its neighbours, especially with Bangladesh? That second question has been making the rounds since Modi served warning that all Bangladeshis who had entered India illegally must be ready to pack their bags and leave. At the government level, there has been no official reaction to Modi’s remarks. For obvious reasons, successive governments in Bangladesh have repeatedly denied any infiltration of Bangladeshis into India. Therefore, responding to Modi’s statement might only complicate matters for Dhaka at the official level. Silence is of the essence.

    As far as the general run of Bangladeshi citizens is concerned, there is the worry that under a Modi dispensation, with its not so subtle emphasis on a non-secular India about to emerge, such issues as land boundary demarcation and Teesta water-sharing can only reach a more complicated zone of contention. The intriguing bit here is that suddenly Mamata Banerjee, considered responsible for the scuttling of a possible Teesta deal during Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit to Dhaka in 2011, has turned somewhat into a figure of admiration, owing to her feisty ripostes to Modi.

    In the innermost recesses of their souls, very large numbers of Bangladeshis entertain the hope, however misplaced it might turn out to be, that the BJP and Modi will not win enough seats in the Lok Sabha to form the next government in India. The vigorous campaigning undertaken by Priyanka Gandhi in recent days has impressed Bangladeshi observers, to a point where memories of Indira Gandhi have come alive in the country. Indira Gandhi remains a heroine for all Bangladeshis because of her support, both materially and politically, for the cause of Bangladesh’s liberation in 1971. Priyanka Gandhi is, therefore, a throwback to old times and indeed there is the faint hope that her campaigning will cause a dent in the Modi armour, enough to prevent India from slipping into the hands of the BJP and its allies.

    Bangladeshis are troubled at the tragic figure that Manmohan Singh has turned into, but believe it was the people around him who led him to such a condition. P. Chidambaram has been a man much admired in Bangladesh for his erudition as well as hands-on approach to the economy. Meira Kumar as speaker of the Lok Sabha has been symbolic of woman power earned through dint of merit. Rahul Gandhi has been disappointing for many. Arvind Kejriwal of the Aam Aadmi Party, initially regarded as a sign of the future, is these days looked upon as a man who is yet to educate himself in Indian national politics.

    And disappointment has also come through watching some well-known figures making a beeline for the BJP. Bappi Lahiri, whose music has inspired Bangladesh’s young artistes, shocked Bangladeshis when he joined the BJP and obtained the nomination for a Lok Sabha seat. In earlier years, Victor Banerjee and Bhupen Hazarika had caused disappointment by linking up with the BJP. The belief in Bangladesh was, and is, that artistes cannot but be secular in spirit and demeanour. Once that code appears to be broken, it is the fans’ hearts that get cracked.

    A major cause of disappointment for Bangladeshis, particularly the educated elite among them, has been journalist M.J. Akbar’s entry into the BJP. Long considered one of the saner voices of liberal journalism, Akbar has, by his decision to join the BJP and at the same time call upon India’s Muslims to extend support to the party, left many Bangladeshis revisiting the old question of intellectual honesty.

    For Bangladeshis in general, despite the fond hopes of many among them of an upset preventing Modi from assuming power in New Delhi, the feeling is of India being on a sure route to the politics of Hindu fundamentalism. Bangladeshi intellectuals often recall the era of Jawaharlal Nehru; and shake their heads at the thought of Modi exercising the powers India’s first and absolutely secular prime minister once used to the advantage of India and its people.

    Bangladesh’s people wait for the results of India’s general elections. Like Amartya Sen, they are not comfortable with the thought that a Narendra Modi juggernaut is about to sweep into high office in Delhi. They keep their fingers crossed. In their minds, there is worry about the shape of the future of the subcontinent.
    The writer is executive editor,
    ‘The Daily Star’, Dhaka

    How Dhaka sees the Modi juggernaut | The Indian Express | Page 99

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

    I find it rather odd that Bangladeshis should feel unhappy that Modi said that illegal Bangladeshi immigrants will be sent back. He was merely stating what the Supreme Court had ruled and the successive Govts failed to implement.

    In fact, even Mamata Bannerjee stormed the well of the House when she was an MP over the same. Of course she forgets that and gives it a spin that she stormed the well against bogus ration cards given by the Left Front Govt. Bogus rations cares to who, Didi? To Indians? Or Bangladeshis? Caught in your own trap, Didi?

    It is a false premise that a non secular India will emerge if Modi becomes the PM. Not only Modi has snubbed Togadia and the wild Hindutva elements, but also there are the safeguards of institutions of India that will ensure that the matrix of India's functioning cannot be disturbed.

    And as Lt Gen Zu Shah, the VC of AMU said in an interview to the Telegraph people change when power comes into their hand, implying that one cannot then ride their favourite hobby horses.

    Bangladeshis, being divorced of the reality of India and by distance may hope that the Gandhis return, but the ground situation proves otherwise.

    If Chidambaram was a admired in Bangladesh for having a hands-on approach to the economy, then maybe it is the spinoff of a Bangaldeshi Schadenfreud. The most horrifying state of Indian economy has been during Chidambaram's time when the economy went into a tailspin.

    It is not only that Bappi Lahiri, MJ Akbar, Babul Supriyo who are with the BJP, but many others too. What Bangaldeshis should realise that given the sad state in which India went hurtling downwards wherein even the all knowing about India NRI, Amartya Sen felt that Bangladesh has a better record than India, the live down the shame, people flocked not to BJP but to Modi since of all the one in the political pack, Modi alone appeared to decisive enough to put India back on keel.

    Dispassionately observed, none in their wildest dream would have the Nightmare called Congress back. AAP, which dazzled like a candle in the political darkness that India has sunk to, seems to have lost its moral fire and none can have the kidchidi or risotto for the Delhi drawing room class, called the Third Front, unless one is possessed by a suicidal instinct.

    Therefore, what was the option?

    Maybe, given Modi's manner of functioning, there is hope that issues with Bangladesh like the Teesta waters and the enclaves will get solved.

    Hope, after all, springs eternal in the human breast.
     
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  3. Vishwarupa

    Vishwarupa Senior Member Senior Member

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    Modi should announce some special packages to BD & ask them to take back all the 3-4cr bangladeshis back to their mother land.

    This will not only save our resources but once for all finish congress, Communists, TMC in NE region & will stop terrorist activities to certain extent.

    This will also send a strong feelers pakistanis about the new India under Modi & the so called sickularist in India will also have some job at hand ie protesting against Modi.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2014
  4. jackprince

    jackprince Turning into a frog Senior Member

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    Take back?!!! BD refuses to take back the illegals caught and ordered by the courts to deport, and they ill take back the folks who have acquired ration cards? No way!

    BD makes a good earning through these illegals who send back money to their villages earned in India.
     
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  5. ninja85

    ninja85 Regular Member

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    good idea but they still deny modi should kicked them out.
     
  6. Energon

    Energon DFI stars Stars and Ambassadors

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    If Modi is smart he will forgo the rhetoric and make a deal with the Bangladeshi government behind closed doors vis a vis repatriating illegal immigrants.
     
  7. Vishwarupa

    Vishwarupa Senior Member Senior Member

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    What deal should he make. Will Bangladesh take back their citizens just like that?
     
  8. Energon

    Energon DFI stars Stars and Ambassadors

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    There is always a deal to be made one way or another. The ability to identify leverage and use it effectively sets a good politician from a crappy one. This is no time for demagoguery though. If he goes in front of cameras and starts hollering about catching Bangladeshi illegal immigrants, stuffing them into canons and blowing them into the bay of bengal nothing's going to happen.
     
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  9. sesha_maruthi27

    sesha_maruthi27 Senior Member Senior Member

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    Bangladesh has moved forward from the 1971 war and it is 2014 and there are no much of Indian supporters left in Bangladesh today. The left out are being killed and the people presently in Bangladesh are becoming faithful to their master, Pakistan. This is a very dangerous situation. I think India must be concerned only about the INDIAN MUSLIMS and not the MUSLIMS from PAKISTAN or BANGLADESH as they are not the perfect of people who follow ISLAM.

    PAKISTAN is using ISLAM to kill people around the world, by this they are INSULTING ISLAM. Acutally ISLAM does not say to kill people but says to protect the innocent.

    So pakistan must be finished to save ISLAM.
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2014
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  10. abhi_the _gr8_maratha

    abhi_the _gr8_maratha Senior Member Senior Member

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    india govt should care about indians and not muslims or hindus or any religion
    .
    this is called secularism
     
  11. pratul_09

    pratul_09 Regular Member

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    as per Indian politicians secularism means minority appeasement. they are only busy nurturing their minority vote bank and hence we have this problems.

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  12. abhi_the _gr8_maratha

    abhi_the _gr8_maratha Senior Member Senior Member

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    I know this policy of politician that's why I defined secularism
     
  13. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    There is going to be no repatriation. The costs involved in identifying, and then repatriating make the project a non-starter. And if GoI gets aggressive, the agencies might just end up pushing Indian Bengalis to make numbers.

    Anyways, I don't think Bangladeshis are immigrating to mainland India (can't say about WB and Assam) in large numbers. Makes no sense living like an illegal here.
     
  14. Bangalorean

    Bangalorean Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    Not in "large numbers", but they are still there - in all our metros. From Delhi to Mumbai, all the way to Bangalore and Chennai.
    @LurkerBaba has had Bangladeshi maids in the past in Delhi. You can ask him. It was a convenient arrangement for him too, since the maid would provide a lot of extra favours/service to him. But the basic point is that Bangladeshis do exist all over the nation.

    There was an article recently about a Bangladeshi beggar in Mumbai who became a millionaire, went back ti BD and settled down.
     
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  15. pratul_09

    pratul_09 Regular Member

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    its is true with our porous borders we have many illegal immigrants living all over India. The money and manpower involved in deportation to original country makes the task uphill, not to say the vote bank politics involved makes the task a non starter. We need a strong government at center to tackle this problem firmly without bogging down to vote bank politics.

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  16. TrueSpirit1

    TrueSpirit1 The Nobody Banned

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    Look who lives under the Metro station pillars of Rajouri Garden...that's a glimpse. Mostly, they are concentrated in Northeast, East, North & trans-Yamuna regions. Police officers themselves point out that the 3.5 lakh Bangladeshis in Delhi, some of them with valid documents. Don't know which Delhi you see around you.

    Cops make money protecting illegal Bangladeshis - The Times of India

    BJP govt. has already tried to oust them earlier.

    State BJP government begins deportation drive
     
  17. pratul_09

    pratul_09 Regular Member

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    All the so called secular parties are protecting these illegal immigrants as their vote bank.

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  18. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    @Bangalorean you are talking about those already present for years. Their numbers don't justify having a US ICE like superagency.



    ==
    @TrueSpirit1

    Are you talking about metro pillars where there are bandwalas/ravana walas ? Go talk to them. I was part of a blanket donation drive in that part a few winters ago.

    Beware of the eunuch hookers if you decide to go alone at night :lol:
     
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  19. Energon

    Energon DFI stars Stars and Ambassadors

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    You’re right. I can certainly see how identifying and repatriating current illegal immigrants is a pointless venture given the negative cost: benefit ratio. However this does not change the fact that the next PM of India seriously needs to set up tacit agreements with neighboring countries (especially Nepal and BD) in regards to immigration. Illegal immigration is one of the greatest side effects of globalization. If by some miracle the next administration succeeds in putting the Indian economy on the right path, illegal immigration will become a big problem for the foreseeable future. (Before all the hypernationalists start foaming at the mouth baying for Bangladeshi blood, please remember that countless Indians illegally force their way into more developed nations seeking greater opportunities in order to provide a better life for their families as well. Point being this is a human phenomenon, not a specific cultural or national one.)
    Indian governments have a stellar history of lacking foresight and subsequently nullifying any minor progress the country may have made. It would behoove the next administration to redouble their efforts on the national identification program and simultaneously tackle the issue of illegal immigration as well as urbanization resulting from internal migration from day 1.
     
  20. tarunraju

    tarunraju Moderator Moderator

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    Modi has the knack of turning gravity to opportunity. What if he passively starves Bangladeshis first, and gives the entire nation an offer it can't refuse (entry into the Indian union)? Will people of Bangladesh vote against entering the Union in a free and fair referendum?

    Granted, adding 150 million Muslims into the Indian electorate is never a good thing for the BJP and the Sangh, but if it consolidates the Hindu vote elsewhere (as exit polls are showing,) then the party can absorb the disturbance in India's demographics.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2014
  21. Bangalorean

    Bangalorean Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    The problem with textbook preachers is the tendency to completely overlook historical context and speak of goody-goody stuff like "universal values, liberalism, secularism, etc.".

    You speak of Indians migrating to developed nations for better opportunities. Sounds like a brilliant comparison. Except that your classical textbook liberal narrative totally ignores the historical context.

    Here we have a bunch of fanatics crying out loud, screaming, ranting, raging, killing, looting, murdering, pillaging and abusing for the sake of their own nation, on the basis that "Muslims can never live with Hindus since Muslims have ruled Hindus". They forced a violent partition of India, one of the bloodiest events in human history. They enforced the largest "Muslim reservation" in the history of mankind.

    And now we are expected to cater to their hordes and their litter.

    Call me communal, call me a bigot, call me a frothing-in-the-mouth-nationalist - whatever the devil you want - but the fact is that we can, and should give asylum to refugees of dharmic faiths (Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, Sikhism, etc.) from Bangladeshi/Pakistan, but NOT to a single Muslim from Bangladesh/Pakistan. We have a responsibility towards Indian Muslims, since we promised them equal rights in a secular dispensation. And we will not renege on that promise. But even one Paki or BDeshi coming into India needs to be whipped back into their home nation.

    If this is a "communal" policy, so be it.
     
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