I haven’t written much lately because I have been busy with my ISC 12th Board examinations. I have been meaning to write something for quite a while now. Since my last article, which was on Rahul Gandhi, a lot has changed in Indian politics. The two main political parties saw a few changes in their leadership situations. Rahul Gandhi was finally made the official second-in-command, second after Mrs Gandhi, and BJP elected Rajnath Singh as their National President after a turbulent week of politicking around Nitin Gadkari’s candidature for the post. One politician announced his entry on the national stage by addressing some of India’s brightest students at the Sri Ram College of Commerce. Narendra Modi, fourth time Gujarat Chief Minister, outlined his vision for India through a narration of his work in Gujarat, to much applause from the young men and women.
All those who believe that 2014 will see a Narendra Modi v/s. Rahul Gandhi battle should prepare for some major disappointment. Rahul Gandhi has indeed shown the country that since Motilal Nehru, the Nehru-Gandhi family has exhibited an exponential decline in the capacity of their successive generations to lead a nation. Not unlike his mother, the Gandhi scion has probably realised that it will be more comfortable to run the Government from outside it, than as a part of it. He could lead his mysterious life the way he is leading it right now and allow his mother and the Congress’ sycophants to run the country the way they want to. Of course, any of this will matter only if the Congress is re-elected in the 2014 General elections.
The other major development has been a decline of many regional satraps. Nobody seems to be talking about this decline, possibly because there is a lot more drama in the two main parties to consider the smaller parties. Since Bal Thackeray’s passing away, the Shiv Sena has become weaker, with quite a few leaders defecting to rival parties. The Samajwadi party has gradually been losing popularity since they got elected last year. Mamata Bannerjee is arguably the biggest loser of them all, with a huge population becoming disillusioned with the whimsical leader. The reason this weakening is of significance, is that it makes the 2014 election even more complex than people believe it is going to be. It greatly increases the likelihood of an incredibly fractured mandate, with no political party crossing even 150 Lok Sabha seats.There is another event that took place in the last two months, that few Indians are aware of. People wonder why Arvind Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party has suddenly become invisible and inactive. They have reason to be curious because ever since Mr Kejriwal’s Swiss bank account expose that involved big names like the Ambanis, he has virtually disappeared off TV screens and newspapers. What people are clueless about, is a legal notice that Mukesh Ambani sent to media houses that ran Mr Kejriwal’s presser threatening them that he would take them to court for playing his expose on Live television, without ‘substantiating his claims’ and as a result defaming Reliance and Mr Ambani. The funny part is that Mr Ambani threatened the people who conveyed the AAP National Convener’s allegations and not Mr Kejriwal himself. The media’s role is to convey what is happening and what significant people are saying, regardless of the veracity of the things spoken. By threatening the media, Mr Ambani has seriously hampered the media’s independence. If his argument is assumed to be correct, the media should never play a clip of politicians denying their roles in corruption scams, because their denials are ‘unsubstantiated.’For well wishers of Mr Kejriwal and the AAP, you will be happy to know that his political revolution is taking place in New Delhi in a big way. Every single day he holds a rally (Jan Sabha) in a different Assembly constituency to create awareness among the people about Congress and BJP’s corruption. He explains what changes he wishes to make, if elected, and runs his campaign on the promise of decentralization of power. His rallies attract huge crowds of genuine supporters (who are not brought to the location by buses from surrounding villages) cheering him throughout his speeches. The Delhi elections in October this year would be very interesting even if the AAP were to win a third of the seats, as Delhi is usually a two-way battle between Congress and BJP. Assuming the rest of the seats are shared by the two national parties, there would be a hung Assembly! This is not to say that the party is active only in Delhi. Local leaders of the party in Maharashtra like Mayank Gandhi and Anjali Damania are raising very important issues and campaigning in the state against massive corruption in the Maharashtra Government, most importantly in the irrigation sector (the irrigation scam has hit the farmers very hard).
Maharashtra’s politics has been disappointing as ever. Bhaskar Jadhav, an NCP Minister from the Konkan region spent crores of rupees on a lavish wedding ceremony for his son’s marriage. He invited over one lakh people for lunch, including hundreds of ‘VIP’s for which he used around 22 helipads to ferry the important men to the location. The fact that he has the money to organise such an event is no longer appalling because everybody has accepted that politicians make big money through corruption and nobody can do anything about it. The appalling part was that this comes at a time when Maharashtra is facing its worst drought in its post-independence history. I am unable to understand how a person who claims to be an elected representative dares to be so insensitive to his people. Having said this, I appeal to my readers to choose their representative wisely and save this democracy from going to the dogs.