The murky mess of Indian Politics and 2014 Elections

Discussion in 'Politics & Society' started by Ray, Jun 26, 2012.

  1. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    Buddies of one time gone astray.

    What do it portend and signify for the 2014 Elections.

    Indian politics is in a phase of a huge churn!

    All Parties and Coalitions re being split vertically and horizontally.

    Uncertain times ahead!
     
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  3. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    Split wide open

    Neerja Chowdhury

    The presidential elections have brought to the fore the fragility of the NDA alliance

    The candidature of Pranab Mukherjee, all set to resign from the Congress party in readiness for his new role in Rashtrapati Bhavan, has divided every major political formation right down the middle.

    The presidential sweepstakes have brought every faultline in the BJP and the NDA to the fore, with the Shiv Sena (its oldest ally) and the JD(U) openly breaking ranks with the party.

    Admittedly, the BJP's Plan A has failed, which was to join hands with Mamata Banerjee and Mulayam Singh Yadav and get A P J Abdul Kalam to contest the election. But the BJP failed to anticipate Yadav's game plan, which was to be persuaded by the Congress to dump Kalam and then back Mukherjee.

    The BJP's decision to back P A Sangma was not just to underscore the BJP's credentials as an opposition party in the prevailing anti-Congress environment.

    The import of Sangma lay in his sponsor, Jayalalithaa. Her support can become vital in selecting who emerges as the BJP's prime ministerial candidate in 2014. Narendra Modi enjoys a rare rapport with her and would like to swing her support to the NDA, to counter the ''ally" argument trotted out against him to stop his projection - if and when Nitish Kumar delinks his party from the NDA. The Shiv Sena and the Akali Dal are not likely to leave the NDA on account of Modi.

    Knowing the import of Jayalalithaa in the future scheme of things to come, L K Advani too stepped up efforts to win her over. He called on her in Chennai, and sought her support for Kalam, which she was willing to give. But when Kalam decided not to contest, there was Sangma.

    The BJP's travails today stem from the unsettled power struggle that is going on inside the party, which has a bearing on every decision it takes.

    It centres around who would be its prime ministerial candidate, if the opportunity arises in 2014, or earlier. But at an unstated level, it also revolves around the extent to which the party's ideology should be moderated, and its autonomy of functioning retained, with the RSS becoming increasingly assertive in party affairs.

    There are many straws in the wind to indicate that the RSS leadership is not disinclined to project Modi as the face of the party, if he wins Gujarat. This was evident from the ''Sangh" brokering a truce between Nitin Gadkari and Modi at Mumbai, which allowed Modi to hijack the occasion; the way Sanjay Joshi was sacrificed by the Sangh; and RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat's quick riposte to Nitish's remark that the BJP should project a "secular" and a "liberal" PM candidate soon.

    Whatever be the post-facto explanation being given for Bhagwat's statement - it was highly unusual for the RSS chief to intervene publicly in a political matter - it was interpreted as a sign of the RSS batting for Modi.

    The RSS leadership seems to have concluded that for all his faults, Modi is the only one who can galvanise the party and enthuse the BJP's cadre, and support base. They also calculate that given the present dissatisfaction with a "weak" UPA leadership, Modi could click as a "strong" leader among the urban middle class and the youth. The Sangh brass has made no secret of the fact that they would like the party's senior leaders to make way for younger leaders, putting an end to the Atal-Advani era. Since they know that Modi is bound to polarise the polity, send the minorities into the Cong-ress's arms, and force the exit of the JD(U), the timing of his projection and what role he is given still remain open questions.

    That is why Modi's opponents would like the prime ministerial question to remain open till after the next general elections, when the imperatives of a coalition government may throw him out of the race.

    The battle lines are getting drawn not just inside the BJP. What is also becoming visible are the contours of a bigger political battle, though these are still early days to predict anything definitively.

    As Modi, and all that he represents - a cocktail of Hindutva, nationalism, delivery and strong leadership -gets ready to lead the BJP next year, Nitish, pitching for a "secular" PM, has made his first move to acquire the leadership of the "other side". For the "secular" space does not have a known leader today. It is not clear who the Congress will project as its PM candidate in the 2014 polls.

    If Nitish delinks from the NDA on the Modi issue, could he emerge as the Mr Secular of Indian politics, capturing the imagination of the country as someone who can take on Modi? He has a clean image, and has turned around a backward state like Bihar, which is more difficult to achieve than improve the situation in a more developed Gujarat. Nitish is in touch with other regional satraps, with a view to forming a front. But their response will depend on the popular response that Nitish - and Modi - evoke. The Bihar CM is learnt to be doing a detailed survey to ascertain the impact of his quitting the NDA, and contesting in all the 40 Lok Sabha consti-tuencies on his own in Bihar.

    Admittedly, there are too many ifs and buts in this scenario. What we are witnessing today is a state of political flux. The presidential polls have brought about a loosening of existing alliances. The Gujarat elections will be another defining moment for the Indian polity.

    The writer is a political commentator.

    Split wide open - The Times of India
     
  4. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    With Nitish Kumar acting as a bucking bronco, the BJP will dig in their heels and support Modi as PM.

    But is the suggestion of Modi as PM a clever way to feel the wind?

    There is no doubt that UPA II has failed the nation in more than one way. People are despondent and dispirited. The arrogant brouhaha of Manish Tiwari or the diarrohea mouthed Digvijay is muted, opening rarely lest one feels he is a landed fish quite dead and clammy.

    Kapil Sibal's arrogance has been brought down quite a few notches by the IIT.

    Khurshed is no longer appearing as the new messiah of the Muslims.

    Moily is moping around after the trouncing of the Congress in AP, while trying to balance the ignominy with the usual tool of their handmaiden, the CBI, as if YSR was pure as driven snow and his son is dirty muddy slushy thaw!

    Pranab Mukherjee is scurring to safety wanting to be the President and out of the mess that he, Montek and Manmohan has landed India in.

    And so, all in the Congress seem to have read the writing on the wall, the tea leaves and the Tarot Cards too!

    On the other side of the spectrum, BJP is at a crossroad with the Central leadership and RSS giving way to Modi and still wanting to show they are in control.

    Nitish Kumar is desperate to adorn a new avatar.

    While there is a convergence between BJP, BJD and Jayalalithaa in that they are backing Sangma.

    Mamata Bannerjee is vacillating as a Force 10 gale.

    If this is the scenario, where is India heading in so far as the 2014 elections.
     
  5. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    With Pranab Mukherjee resigning as the Foreign Minister and if the Congress can pick up the threads and get India to bounce back, is there a good chance for the Congress to make a comeback with the thumping numbers as the Congress had in the last elections.

    Which all political parties will then gravitate to form the UPA III?

    Given the way the BJP and NDA appears fractured, what is the chance of the NDA. They have not as yet shown any sterling achievement which could woo the voters?
     

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