Saturday, August 22, 2009

Tough time calls for BJP

The 2009 general elections didn’t turn out as the BJP had expected, as a matter of fact, I too was surprised by Congress’s win. But as we now see that surprise defeat was not the end of problem for the saffron party, but just the beginning.

The Chintan Baithak at the scenic and cool Shimla got off to a rather hot start with the safari suit clad Jaswant Singh being expelled from the party. Not quite a long back, he along with Atal and Advani constituted the face of BJP.

He might not had a dramatic rise but a crestfallen Jaswant Singh sure had a rollicking downfall. No single reason can be attributed to the recent development.

The crab mentality that plagues every organization, which currently is working at full force for BJP, the emergence of new ‘young’ leaders, who have waited years for their turn to come but all in vain, the recent poll debacle, the RSS factor, and the slow but steady disappearance of Atal from the party, all made it easy to show Jaswant the door.

We have been hearing the same name in BJP for all these years. Names that have been in queue to climb up the ladder, a ladder whose top three stairs have been booked for Atal, Adavni and Jaswant. Of all the three, Jaswant was the weakest, and he had to go. Advani will be next and with Atalji retired, it will be everyone for himself for the next generation of party leaders.

The loss in general election was a good ground to start with the assault. RSS saw it as a golden opportunity to once again tighten its grip over the party. RSS had reasons to believe that in recent years its hold over the party had been shrinking. With Jaswant Singing Jinnah and blasting Patel, they found a much needed cause to show who the boss is.

The other big reason is that BJP is still figuring out what to do with the Muslim population. It is still going to and from whether to appease the minority population go soft on Hindutva or stick to hard core Hindutva. In between this undecided scenario, Jaswant thought that maybe praising Jinnah was the next best thing to do after denouncing Patel. And as we all now know, neither of them worked in the way he expected it to be.

There have been far greater grounds for axing leaders in BJP in the past, but as I said, if it was just on the basis of the core reason, Jaswant would have been still alive and kicking. It is obnoxious to expel a leader who have been in the party for the last 30 years, who had just won a lok Sabah election by more than 3 lakhs vote and a man who did good, if not great work in various capacity at the central level, just because he wrote a book.

To start with there was no bigger ground than Kandahar to expel a few sleeping man who waited for the god to intervene before the aircraft took off to Kandahar, then came Kargil, still the same old guys continued to ‘serve’ the nation.

And finally came Gujarat. Not trying to sound a pseudo secularist, what happened at Godhra was and is unpardonable and and exception should have been made out and the perpetrators should have been given a medieval kind of punishment. But whatever happened thereafter could and should have been controlled had the BJP state government followed Raj Dharma as Atal pointed out.

BJP right now is going through a churning process, which as we all know is not very memorable. From now on it will be Advani who will have to fight and stave attacks, depending on whether he has any desire to do so.

Don’t think that Rajnath Singh will have to bear the same as he doesn’t have ambitions that require a bloodbath as he knows his position, strengths and weaknesses well. Sushma swaraj too is now a shadow of her former self, and with no Atal to provide her support she too will be contended in whatever she is offered.

The two people to look out in the near future are Modi and Jaitley. They will be the two poles that the others will have to choose from in the near future.

But a party cannot be run by two men who are highly ambitious. Atal always knew that he can never be replaced or upstaged. And Adavani too was aware and accepted the fact that he will be more highly rewarded if he stays with Atal, if not behind him. There was never a dichotomy or any doubt in any of the BJP workers mind that who had the final say in the party matter and that made for a smooth running. In a relationship, of every nature, one has to be one percent more than the other for it to blossom.

And between Modi and Jaitley, one of the two has to realize this. The sooner they do it, the better it will be for them and for the party. RSS should limit its role to that of a guardian, and that too in a strict sense, only coming in the picture when it’s truly required.

There is a difference between meddling and offering advice. This is something that Mohan Bhagwat has to make himself and his organization understand.

The Chintan baithak will come out with many ideas, but only with time, will the BJP regains it full glory, till then it has to wait and bid its time.

Looking at a larger perspective, India, just like any other democracy, will be benefitted more if we have a strong opposition party, which as of now is nowhere to be seen.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Bhopal diary II

Day before yesterday, I along with a friend went to my alma mater, my school, Jawahar Lal Nehru at 2 in the night.

As is with everyone else, this institution is very close to my heart. I can talk and talk and write hundreds if not thousands pages on my moments at Jawahar and it hurts very deeply and very subtly when you find that something which is so close to you, something which has given you so many things is going through a bad time.

As we entered the school campus, there was no sign of any welcoming party except a sleeping guard and 4-5 dogs who were as charming as they were allowed to be. Memories as unfailing as ever came back in waves.

Nothing had changed, sounds cliche, but that's the way it is. The same sprawling football/kabbadi/cricket ground. Even the lamp posts appeared as silent as they use to eight years ago.

As I went further, I found the stairs of the basketball court breathing its last few breaths. There stairs were located and built at a very strategic place offering good view of the many things. (No pun intended).

Then we had a stroll in the famous corridors of Jawahar---and as expected met no one. Went through the list of retired teachers and staff and was hit by a strong sense of nostalgia. It's sometimes very hard to accept a fact. Just couldn't imagine what was at work, maybe it was something hard to decipher let alone describe.
But now Jawahar has lost its academic and other attributes that were so once so famous. I guess the downfall started in 2003-2004. One of the cause was Trishal sir's retirement and the subsequent inability of the school management to instill the same level of discipline.

Have heard stories about misadventure in the premise of the school that was unimaginable in our times. It was not the fear of any disciplinary action that stopped us from doing any thing reckless but a sense of belonging and a sense of respect. And remember there was no RDB syndrome at that time which would have given us any inspiration.

About a month back while having tea at a roadside chaiwala I saw a bespectacled dude in Jawahar school uniform smoking cigarette. The best I could do was to ask him to keep the school tie in his bag because our school has a dress code that's similar to many other schools of Bhopal and it is the tie that separates or more appropriately used to separate the wheat from the chaff. He readily obliged as he was spared the lecture of the ills of smoking , which I had no intention of showering him with.

Can only hope for the revival of the good old Jawahar...

Still remember the last days.Everything is so vividly sketched,May they never fade.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Bhopal diary I

What should i write...there are so many things to say.

Life has come a full circle, both literally as well figuratively. And i stand at a place from where I started. Back in Bhopal after a not so long period of 4 months has been a see-saw of a ride. Most of the times it has been on an upward climb and often i have experienced the feel of gravity pulling me down.

For now my career-car is parked in SBI where i learn the art of being a probationary officer. During times, when my mind is at its idle best, which is very rarely, I dwell on how it was to be a lawyer and a journalist.

It was from Bhopal that i took my first steps towards Doha as a journalist and it was in Bhopal where i got a degree which gave me the title of a lawyer.

Just days back, one of my friend asked me that how long i am going to remain a banker and i replied not for long. I don't know why, but still i feel that this is not my final destination. SBI is a great place to work and the colleagues are great. The nature of job too is not bad as i thought it would be, but i am sure that sooner rather than later i will be into another role...

Those who know me well, including my aunt, ask me to foray back into journalism again. Maybe i will, once i am retired and living a not so mundane life, maybe i will.

Finally i will soon be having a Dell laptop to 'play' with and i am sure that i have not made a wrong choice, a choice which is a culmination of long hours of walking into shops and talking to people from different fields and none of them from the IT sector. Also have some travelling to do as i will have to go to Delhi, Kolkata and Patna soon. "Indian railways mai aa raha hoo...gana mai gaa raha hoo''.

The hoohoo over Balochistan, The yet another spat between the Ambani brothers, the not-so polite tit-a-tat between Mayawati and Bahugana and the real 'Sach ka Saamna' enacted by Omar Abdullah made for a good reading on an otherwise dull week.

On a more local level the increase in the crime rate in Bhopal is being attributed to the fact that most of those involved in these petty crimes are getting patronage from their local saffron clad leaders. How far this is true is something that can be argued on, but if this has any crediblity then its not a good sign for anyone. Shivraj Singh Chauhan's hard work on good governance may lose steam if the crime level is not controlled.

Would like to end with some lines that i read somewhere...

"When the dark deep black falls over the blue sky
and the stars begin to flicker in the cloudless sky
through the mist of memories you wander back to me
breathing my name with a silent sigh...

simple words, pure emotions...


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...