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Mamata playing tired old game, voluble counter-aggression, which has 'no relevance' in Modi era

By Ajit Sahi*
West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee is headed towards failure in her pitched battle against Prime Minister Narendra Modi. There is no stopping Modi’s aggressive, no-holds-barred political play. And Mamata has neither a strategy nor any tactics to fend it off.
Worse for her, she’s playing the tired old game — voluble counter-aggression — which has no relevance in the Modi era. Modi’s remarkable and ruthless political cunning — and I do not use the term negatively — will smash her out the park.
To be fair to Mamata, the situation is unprecedented.
It is true that strong political opponents at the Centre and a state have faced off, even with violence, in the past. But the battle has never been so unequal as it is in this case between Mamata and Modi. For there is not a public institution in West Bengal — police, judiciary, bureaucracy — where Modi/RSS haven’t already made inroads.
The Supreme Court, too, has more often than not gone against Mamata on most cases concerning West Bengal. It is neither a secret nor a surprise that in recent years India’s top court has been averse to ruling against Modi or Modi’s government, or even against Amit Shah.
In West Bengal, only a foolish police officer or bureaucrat would offer his unflinching loyalty to Mamata, given how the ruthless Modi-Shah machine have made mincemeat of such officers of any state — including by using the judiciary — if and when they chose to side with forces that were against the duo’s interests and diktat.
Lately, the Supreme Court has supported Center’s action against Mamata’s police and bureaucrats.In short, Mamata’s government may already be hollowed from within. Then there is the wider civil society.
While the RSS was always a massive elephant, Modi is the real juggernaut in today’s India. For years we have thought that Modi had the Indian news media by the jugular. But we all had it wrong. Modi hasn’t ever needed to bother to find the news media’s jugular.
Because such had his political persona become from even before he was prime minister that it had a chokehold over the imagination of hundreds of millions of English- and Hindi-speaking (and now many of the Bengali-speaking) well-to-do middles classes that make up India’s journalists, corporate executives, military officers, bureaucrats, artists, writers, film-makers, actors, lawyers, judges, students, et al.
When the Communists ruled West Bengal, Kolkata’s middle classes notoriously led the rebellion and fell in Mamata’s lap. Now, at Modi’s bidding, they will do to Mamata what they had then done to the Marxists.
Notice how brilliantly Modi-Shah are strategizing this time around. Already doctors in Maharashtra and Delhi — and even private sector doctors! including from Fortis Gurgaon! — are going on strike in support of Kolkata’s doctors who are striking against brutal violence against two doctors, allegedly by family members of a Muslim patient who died at a government hospital there.
This is just the opportunity Modi-Shah thrive on, and now they have millions of eyes, ears, hands and hearts ready to fight their battle against Mamata. Mamata will be taken down for sure, if not now then in a while. It took three years, from 2011 to 2014, for UPA and the Congress to be wiped out.
Akhilesh Yadav’s government may have lived its five years, but his politics tottered the day the Muzaffarnagar violence began in 2013, and sputtered out over the next four years until the BJP swept Uttar Pradesh.
There was once a man named Lalu Yadav who dared to take on the RSS. As Manmohan’s Railway Minister during 2004-09, Lalu tried to pin the Godhra train fire on Modi. Modi never forgave him for that. Today, as Lalu rots in prison, there is not a judge in Jharkhand, where the so-called fodder scam cases lie, or at the Supreme Court who will dare to give Lalu bail. Forget Lalu, the Supreme Court can’t even dare to give Sanjiv Bhatt bail.
At last now Lalu has realized that there’s no hope for him. This is not to say Mamata will find herself in prison for sure — although that’s the very plan that Modi-Shah have for her, through the so-called Sarada corruption case.
But first, Mamata will be politically discredited and then decimated, just as Lalu was, just like a matador incapacitates the raging bull before putting it down with a knife through its heart.
Now do you understand why the likes of Mulayam never say a word against Modi? Forget political opposition, there is not even a social opposition to Modi. He, his politics and his worldview are the only dominant phenomena.
I, of course, will continue to oppose all three till my dying breath.
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Source: Author's Facebook timeline

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