Skip to main content

Heads I win, tails you lose. Modi doesn't believe in sharing power, he only commands

By RK Misra*Destiny is a tyrant’s authority for tomfoolery and a fool’s excuse for failure. More so in politics. Not all are born great; some have greatness thrust on them but then neither are those perceived as great, always wise. And when respected citizen-journalist Arun Shourie speaks, the toast of the times, Prime Minister Narendra Modi need take a reality check on his politics and pursuits rather than be guided by personal pique to engineer a contrived PR show counter.
Shourie, unlike the two other mercurial mavericks, Subramaniam Swamy and Ram Jethmalani, who stood by Modi in his worst hours of crisis (2002 communal riots etc. etc.), commands respect in both journalism and politics. A man of unimpeachable integrity, he has earned every bit of it through his exemplary conduct, and high quotient credibility. And when he speaks, people listen.
For most of those who have watched Modi and his politics over years and decades, he has now become very predictable in his unpredictability. So was the first exercise at damage neutralization. Thus it was that the doyen of media PR in Delhi, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, called over selected big media names for a get together where the Prime Minister just sauntered in by happenstance, as genial as ever, though seeking to avoid any reaction on Shourie’s views.
Shourie has referred to the triumvirate of Modi, party president Amit Shah and Jaitley ruling the BJP. The union finance minister only proved this point. Shah owes everything to Modi and Jaitley quite a bit.
Inducted into the Rajya Sabha from Gujarat courtesy then chief minister Modi, Jaitley saw no conflict of interest or pangs of guilt in defending scamster Ketan Parekh in the supreme Court against the interests of lakhs of Gujarat depositors of the besieged Madhavpura Mercantile cooperative Bank (MMCB) of Ahmedabad. Jaitley had faced angry protestors seeking his resignation for betraying people’s interest though being an MP from the state in 2005.He remained unfazed and Modi too chose to go along with Jaitley though it led to a major split in the ranks of the party.
Add caption
Shourie’s words are no revelation. Everyone in the party knows about this concentration of power. ‘Minimum government, maximum governance’, is the slogan he first coined as Gujarat chief minister. It was an exercise in deception.The fact however is that the state never saw so much concentration of power in one hand ever in its 55 year old history as it saw in the 12 plus years of Modi rule.
For almost two full terms, Modi did not make political appointments to state boards and public sector corporations, preferring bureaucrats to head them. After an initial tussle for power, he was the government and he was the party. Even within the Gujarat BJP, those not with him were deemed to be opposed to him and therefore marked out for political obliteration.
It was after the advent of Modi on the Gujarat BJP scene that maximum number of party stalwarts were either packed out or sent into the wilderness.These included seniors like Shankersinh Vaghela, party patriarch Keshubhai Patel and former chief minister Suresh Mehta, to name a few. Ironically, Modi used LK Advani to send all these seniors packing and then finally neatly sidelined the former deputy prime minister himself. One has been witness to the spectacle of Modi hanging onto to Advani’s coattails in 2001 and then pushing him into oblivion last year.
Modi does not believe in sharing power. He only commands, even his colleagues in what is a master-follower relationship. Take the case of the Tata move of the Nano plant from Singur in West Bengal to Sanand in Gujarat. The policy concessions to the business house required a cabinet nod and yet not a single minister knew the contents of the agreement signed.
Except the three emergent angles of the BJP triangle,everyone can see the slowly gathering turbulence within the party, particularly in the aftermath of the Delhi election results.The posters episode on the occasion of RSS leader Sanjay Joshi’s birthday was the firstly overtly defiant posturing against the dominance of the threesome.
Modi has no hesitation in opening lines of communication with China and the USA which stoutly refused to give him a visa until he became Prime Minister but yet shuns a dialogue with his own RSS colleague. All manner of state and central agencies kept tailing Joshi when he recently visited Gujarat. But the more, the present power grouping treats him as a pariah, the more is Joshi’s popularity on the increase, particularly amongst the cadres.
National party chief Shah, on his part, seemed to be more interested in soliciting details about who all from the party were reaching out to Joshi in his home state, then the disappointing draw of the party in the recently held local self government polls in West Bengal. The BJP had claimed a voter strength of 42 lakhs there but it found hardly any proportional reflection in the results. Shah has gone on record to state that the real strength of the enrolment will be visible when the Assembly elections are held there next year.
According to him, the BJP national enrolment figure has crossed ten crore. There are complaints galore on this count.This correspondent’s wife received an SMS thanking her for becoming a member of the BJP, giving her enrolment number and asking her provide her personal particulars though she had never ever applied to join any political set up. Lots and lots of people have received such messages. This is one of many examples.
And now word is out that Prime Minister Modi is set to join all time greats like Emperor Ashoka and
Chandragupta Maurya in a tele-serial. The mahurat for it was performed recently.
Self-generated illusions can lead to delusions of grandeur but it is at best a mirage that disappears with time.
---
*Senior journalist. This article has also appeared in http://wordsmithsandnewsplumbers.blogspot.in/

Comments

TRENDING

Billion vaccine doses? Devil is in details: 70% haven't got 2nd jab; numbers jacked up

By Prof Ujjwal K Chowdhury*  India has reached the one billion Covid-19 vaccinations milestone. It is indeed a great news and a big salute to the less paid ordinary health-workers in interiors of India for this feat. The government wants all of India's 944 million adults to get vaccinated this year. Around three-quarters of adults in the country of 1.3 billion people have had one shot and around 30 percent are fully vaccinated, the government says.

Savarkar 'criminally betrayed' Netaji and his INA by siding with the British rulers

By Shamsul Islam* RSS-BJP rulers of India have been trying to show off as great fans of Netaji. But Indians must know what role ideological parents of today's RSS/BJP played against Netaji and Indian National Army (INA). The Hindu Mahasabha and RSS which always had prominent lawyers on their rolls made no attempt to defend the INA accused at Red Fort trials.

Political consensus? Celebrations, with over 5,000 plus post-vaccine deaths in India

By Rosamma Thomas*  As India fully vaccinated nearly 20% of its population and celebrated the “milestone” of administering one billion (100 crore) Covid-19 vaccine doses, it was time to remember those who died shortly after vaccination . By October 20, 2021 Twitter handle C400T, tracking deaths reported to have occurred after receiving the Covid-19 shot in India, updated the 5,134th death.

Top upper caste judges 'biased' towards Dalit colleagues: US Bar Association report

By Rajiv Shah  A high profile report prepared by the influential  American Bar Association (ABA) Center for Human Rights , taking note of the fact that “in the 70-year history of the Indian Republic, only six Dalit judges have been appointed to the Supreme Court”, has taken strong exception to what it calls “lack of representation of Dalits” in the legal profession and the judiciary.

Buddhist shrines were 'massively destroyed' by Brahmanical rulers: Historian DN Jha

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

Failure of 'trickle down theory' behind India's poor Global Hunger Index rating

By Dr Gian Singh*  On October 14, 2021, two organisations, Concern Worldwide (An Irish aid agency) and WeltHungerHilfe (a German organization that researches the problem of global hunger), jointly published the Global Hunger Index (GHI) for 2021. These organizations have included 116 countries in the world hunger rankings.

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

Uttarakhand, Kerala disaster due to policies favouring India's developmental mafia

By Vidya Bhushan Rawat*  Two of India’s most beautiful regions where thousands of people go to watch and feel the wonders of nature are suffering because of the extremely disastrous rains and floods. The pain that the rains brought to Kerala and Uttarakhand is a warning to all of us. It's nature’s warning to us to mend our ways.

March opposes Sabarmati Ashram renovation: 'Mahatmaji had kept open for access to all'

Counterview Desk A Sevagram to Sabarmati march, which began on October 17 from Wardha (Maharashtra) and will end on October 24 in Ahmedabad (Gujarat), has demanded that the Sabarmati Ashram, the government should not impose "the fashion and glitz of a shallow modernity" at the cost of Rs 1,200 crore, in the name of renovating the Ashram founded by Gandhiji.

Religious mobs replicate blasphemy laws, 'threatening' liberty in a free country

Nihangs, Lakhbir Singh By Ajit Singh*   A Dalit man, Lakhbir Singh, was mercilessly beaten up and lynched to death near farmers’ protest site in the State of Haryana allegedly by Nihang Sikhs. It was alleged that he committed blasphemy by desecrating the Holy Book Guru Granth Sahib.