The isolated man of Indian politics

There is a vast silent majority out there in Gujarat that doesn’t have any time for Narendra Modi and what he represents

Whatever those opposed to Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi may think, the fact is that he has a fan club of his own. This includes voters, businessmen, Gujarati NRIs and not a few public commentators who stand up for him whenever the occasion arises. But whatever these supporters and acolytes may believe, there is a considerable body of opinion against their hero too. This is not limited to those who suffered in the Gujarat pogrom, or just Muslims everywhere, or the pseudo-secularists or indeed activist busybodies who are fighting him legally and every which way.

There is a vast silent majority out there that doesn’t have any time for Mr Modi and what he represents.
On the 10th anniversary of the post-Godhra riots, both sides came out guns blazing, with the anti-Modi camp setting out the case against him in detail and the supporters countering it on every platform they could find. Irony, the self-same liberal media, often accused of Modi-baiting, offered them the forum, via newspaper columns and television airtime, to have their say, a courtesy that Mr Modi rarely extends to his opponents.
Those who have been battling Mr Modi had only one thing to say — he has failed to provide justice to the victims of those horrible riots. Forget the investigations, which have now become so confusing and convoluted as to have lost any meaning, even rehabilitation has been tardy. As television channels show, refugees live in appalling conditions and apart from government apathy, have to cope with social ostracism; in essence, both the state and society have brushed them out of their eyeline.
Mr Modi’s fans have been offering several counters to these claims and their effort is to show that the riots are a long forgotten issue and much has happened since to wash away any putative sins and crimes. This is what they are saying: a) There has never been a riot since then; b) Look at the fantastic economic development in the state — no other state can match up to it; c) Gujarat has moved on, so let us all move on.
This is such a patently absurd thesis that it does not bear countering. But let us consider it anyway.
The lack of communal violence in Gujarat is no proof of peace. Muslims today find it difficult to buy houses. Their economic and social development has been severely impaired. The polarisation is deep and entrenched in the social fabric. In these circumstances, it is bizarre to say that just because no riots have taken place things are back to “normal”. This is like saying that no Holocaust can now ever take place but ignoring the deep-rooted anti-Semitism which is still among us. Mr Modi may not have personally induced communal feelings in his state, but the riots and the aftermath have happened under his watch.
As far as economic development is concerned — and much of this, including per capita income growth is open to challenge — it undoubtedly suggests good administrative skills. But the big ticket investments (and all the encomiums paid by our top corporate stars) merely imply that business will go where it is most fruitful and profitable. The businessmen are free to suck up to Mr Modi, but it is almost certain that they will suck up to the next chief minister who will take over. They are concerned about their business and for them “stability” is important, whatever the price paid for it. The endorsement of big business, even in these times of an obsession with economic growth over everything, means nothing beyond what it is. Human rights, justice, communal harmony and all those concepts don’t matter a whit when the balance sheet is prepared and Mr Modi and his cheerleaders would do well not to make too much of it.
Which brings us to the “let’s all move on” argument, which is almost like saying let bygones be bygones. This attitude is usually a cover-up for ineptitude and a lack of willingness to own up to one’s misdemeanours. Without closure, how can there be forgetting. And closure will come only when there is some semblance of justice, of honest admission or even of just saying sorry. The BJP still raises the issue of the demolition of the Somnath temple or the constructing of the Babri Masjid and these happened centuries ago! Why not move on from there?
There is something inherently obscene about otherwise sophisticated people glibly waving away the cry for justice and retribution as just another example of secular-speak, as if this is some kind of university level debate instead of an issue about human beings who have suffered and are still suffering. They may win brownie points on television, smirk at the “jholawalas” and win brownie points with Mr Modi and his party, but they know that theirs is a losing battle, no matter if the Great Leader continues to lord it over his state.
They, and he, must know that his political career is now almost over. He can win another election and one more after that, but any fantasies he may have about moving beyond to the top job will never be fulfilled. Even now, despite the best efforts of his rich supporters in Western countries, there is no guarantee he will get a visa to go to the West, especially to the UK, the US or Canada. The allies of the NDA want to keep him away from their states. And there are enough in his own party who dislike him intensely. All the perfumes of Arabia will not wash away his stain and all the praises showered on him by his devotees will not change the fact that he is today an isolated man.

Comments

Amazing, how very clairvoyant

Amazing, how very clairvoyant our Mr. Modi is. If we had more of them, we could do away with the irksome elections. Instead, we coud seek the advice of the new tribe about who was suited for what job.Bhatiaji clean forgot to tell us what the percentage turnout was in the last couple of elections in the state. The percentage Modi's party got, and of those who decided to ignore the process. But then all that data has no meaning for the clairvoyant.

So whats new? A vast majority

So whats new? A vast majority out there in the Indian masses a dont care for Sharad Pawar,,Rahul Gandhi,Lalu Yadav that woman who rules UP,that woman who heads the Congress party and that woman who leads Bengal and a host of politicians of similar ilk The intelligentsia detests the manner in which politicians from the BJP paralysed Parliament for an entire session
The regret is that these so called masses dont count as they chose to remain inactive and silent And thats nothing new ever since the days of S K Patil Reememebr him?

What is absurd is the claim

What is absurd is the claim that vast majority in Gujarat are silent. Elections come EVERY 5 years. Not only current government wins, but at such an overwhelming margin, that there can be no conclusion except that vast majority DO SUPPORT Mr Modi. Unless of course, that you assume that EC is corrupt and we live in China or Russia, Are you suggesting that?

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