Skip to main content

Prominent Modi ally Madhu Kishwar praises Sonia style to say how Prime Minister has "cocooned" himself

By Our Representative
Well-known feminist-turned-Narendra Modi protege Madhu Kishwar has sharply attacked the Prime Minister's "use and throw attitude", saying this is the main reason why most of his well wishers are "sulking." Insisting that the BJP high command "better understand" this, Kishwar, who has been in limelight for criticizing Union human resource development minister Smriti Irani, warns, "The kind of social media warriors that had once flocked to Modi can’t be hired for money."
Especially coming down heavily on those around the Prime Minister, Kishwar, who has been summarily ignored after Modi came to power, says, "Even BJP stalwarts who are not part of the government are complaining about the 'arrogance' and 'inaccessibility' of Team Modi. She adds, "The rank and file of BJP is highly disgruntled and feel their leaders have become too smug and arrogant and they don’t get a hearing even on legitimate issues."
Particularly critizing Modi for the way in which he has "decided to cocoon himself", Kishwar, in an article in a right-wing site, http://swarajyamag.com, titled "Aspiration to Impatience", has surprisingly praised Congress chief Sonia Gandhi's style, suggesting how she "built a power base for herself starting from total scepticism about her suitability for the top job".
"One of the first things she did after UPA’s assumption of power in 2004 was to co-opt several high profile do-gooders as her personal courtiers by creating a high powered National Advisory Council", Kishwar says, adding, "With this one stroke, she managed to tie most of the NGO leaders as well as left-leaning academics and intellectuals to her apron strings."
All this led to a situation where she even managed to rope in even "the likes of Amartya Sen as advisors and in turn a large body of intellectuals became willing courtiers", Kishwar says, adding, "They became intoxicated by their proximity to the UPA High Command and felt they had high stakes in this government."
"They also helped create a halo for Sonia Gandhi as someone who was pro-poor, pro-minorities, pro-all good causes. Even though the Congress ran a scam-ridden government, the leftist NGOs and intellectuals remained Sonia’s firm allies", she underlines.
By contrast, Kishwar says, "far from creating new allies, Modi has studiously distanced himself from old allies like Arun Shourie, the Jethmalanis and numerous others who stood by him." Wondering "who he has surrounded himself with?", she says, "Nameless, faceless bureaucrats and a couple of political favourites who are themselves lightweights."
"The Prime Minister is seen on TV either touring abroad or receiving foreign heads of state, corporate honchos, or meeting socialites and film stars", Kishwar regrets, adding, "In the last several months, one has never once seen him interacting with ordinary citizens. He only addresses them when he goes electioneering."
Calling it "a one-way communication which doesn’t allow for the kind of rapport he once had with party workers and non-BJP volunteers", Kishwar says, "For instance, when Modi launched his Swachh Bharat campaign with much fanfare, he announced famous cricket stars, corporate leaders, Bollywood and TV actors and other celebrities as brand ambassadors", even as neglecting "BJP municipal councilors and party cadres."
Pointing to how all this led to the defeat of the BJP in the Delhi elections, Kishwar says, "The PM had announced with much aplomb that he would be accessible and that people should send him their inputs for improving governance. But many who have taken that invitation seriously tell me that they never even get an acknowledgement, leave alone any serious follow up."
In fact, Kishwar -- who makes her critical remarks on a large number of issues ranging from "inadequate" responose to agrarian crisis, the land acquisition Bill "stalemate", "neglect" of administrative Reforms, to BJP’s "humiliating defeat in Delhi -- says, "Letters to the PM by eminent citizens or requests for appointment are also not answered".

Comments

TRENDING

'Flawed' argument: Gandhi had minimal role, naval mutinies alone led to Independence

Counterview Desk Reacting to a Counterview  story , "Rewiring history? Bose, not Gandhi, was real Father of Nation: British PM Attlee 'cited'" (January 26, 2016), an avid reader has forwarded  reaction  in the form of a  link , which carries the article "Did Atlee say Gandhi had minimal role in Independence? #FactCheck", published in the site satyagrahis.in. The satyagraha.in article seeks to debunk the view, reported in the Counterview story, taken by retired army officer GD Bakshi in his book, “Bose: An Indian Samurai”, which claims that Gandhiji had a minimal role to play in India's freedom struggle, and that it was Netaji who played the crucial role. We reproduce the satyagraha.in article here. Text: Nowadays it is said by many MK Gandhi critics that Clement Atlee made a statement in which he said Gandhi has ‘minimal’ role in India's independence and gave credit to naval mutinies and with this statement, they concluded the whole freedom struggle.

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

Maize, bajra, jute, banana cultivation banned off West Bengal border: Plea to NHRC

Counterview Desk  West Bengal-based human rights defender Kirity Roy, who is secretary, Banglar Manabadhikar Suraksha Manch, and is national convenor of the Programme Against Custodial Torture & Impunity, in a representation to the chairman, National Human Rights Commission, second within few days, has bought to light one more case of trespassing and destruction of a fertile banana plantation by BSF personnel along the Indo-Bangladesh border, stating, despite a written complaint to the police has taken "no initiative".

India second best place to invest, next to UAE, yet there is 'lacks support' for IT services

By Sreevas Sahasranamam, Aileen Ionescu-Somers*  The United Arab Emirates (UAE) is the best place in the world to start a new business, according to the latest annual Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) survey. The Arab nation is number one for the third year in a row thanks to a big push by the government into cutting-edge technology in its efforts to diversify away from oil.

Living standards in 'model' Gujarat worse than major states: Govt of India document

By Rajiv Shah  Amidst raging controversy over whether the latest Government of India’s “Household Consumption Expenditure Survey 2022-23 Fact Sheet: August 2022-July 2023” suggests that India’s poverty levels are actually down to 4.5 to 5%  during the decade-long Narendra Modi rule, a state-wise breakup in the 27-page document shows that “model” Gujarat’s average consumption expenditure is far below most of the so-called developed states.

Mahanadi delta: Aggressive construction in flood plains, reduced fish stock, pollution

By Sudhansu R Das  Frequent natural calamities, unemployment, low farmers’ income, increase in crime rate and lack of quality human resources to strike a balance between growth and environment etc. continue to haunt the state. The state should delve into the root causes of poverty, unemployment and natural calamities.

Not livable in summer, Chitrakut PM-Awas houses 'push' tribals in moneylender trap

By Bharat Dogra*  Those who are in-charge of implementing the PM-Awas scheme of rural housing can rightly take pride in what has been achieved in Dafai hamlet (Karvi block, Chitrakut district, Uttar Pradesh). All the Kol tribal families here are extremely poor and vulnerable. In a rare achievement, almost all of them have received housing assistance under PM Awas. 

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".

Narmada Valley's fossil evidence: Ground for 'nationalists' to argue primates' India roots?

By Saurav Sarkar*  In December 1982, a geologist digging in India’s Central Narmada Valley found something he did not expect. Arun Sonakia, who at the time worked for the Geological Survey of India, unearthed a hominid fossil skullcap from the Pleistocene era. The discovery sent shockwaves through the field of paleoanthropology and put South Asia on the map of human prehistory. Some experts concluded that the skull likely belonged to a member of a predecessor species of ours, Homo heidelbergensis , or perhaps was a hybrid of homo species, while Sonakia himself suggested “ an affinity… to Homo erectus .”

Development? This tribal hamlet in Chitrakut has no toilets, no electricity connections yet

By Bharat Dogra*  As we moved away from the starting point of the Bundelkhand Expressway and a famous pilgrimage site into a side-road, the hills of Chitrakut here appeared to be more and more isolated. Another turn, and we appeared to have reached almost a dead-end. However it is here that over 80 households of the Kol tribal community have been living for a long time.