By Safi Nasim
Indian people have a passion for screen based media/screen entertainment. Therefore, Indian political parties during the current Lok Sabha elections were intensely engaged in producing fun and opera. As expected, Bharti Janta Party (BJP) leadership seems to have taken a lead role with PM Modi being the main actor. In a latest April fool jokes endeavours (coincidentally, Lok Sabha election also started in April) , Indian PM Narendra Modi’s interview with News Nation, a TV channel funded by BJP, has been attracting more audience than BJP voters .
Mr, Modi, during his entire tenure, avoided press conferences/direct hard questions, and his media appearances were mostly scripted or prepared.
Mr Modi, in the epic interview with “News Nation” attempted to impress the Indian voters by revealing the secret of “green signal for the Balakot airstrikes despite bad weather.” His claims from “cloudy” war strategies to digital cameras and emails long before they reached India, he was miles away from common sense and sobriety.
Interestingly, BJP, in particular, possesses and nominates such a class of leaders who are illiterate and insensitive by nature that they have little regard for ethics, international law and science & technology. Communist Party of India leader Sitaram Yechury termed Modi interview as an “insult” and “shameful” for India’s national security institutions. Modi has grandiose visions of himself. The truth is he’s weaker than what he looks.
Measuring the performance of Modi in the previous term; logically, he should be heading for failure. Ordinary Indian voters; they are not the journalists, economists, college professors, industrialists, party spokesmen, political activists, or NGO types we hear on TV.
India’s average voters are peasants in villages and cycling workers in towns with pale faces torn by anxiety. These are mostly young voters unable to find jobs. The voters figure is over 900 million people.
Do these voters rejoice over Modi’s new missiles capable of hitting a satellite or happy to get latest Rafael aircraft or marveling at Modi’s colourful Maharaja Turbans? No way.
Modi has not delivered on the promise of progress and prosperity for all. Modi’s admirers might ask. Then how come the Indian stock market booms? Well, stock markets bet on the future. While voters react to present realities.
It would be highly surprising if Modi leads Indian Lok Sabha. He has ideologically Balkanized India. Modi has ruled through fear and propaganda. BJP rule has proved to be a curse for all minorities: Sikhs, Muslims and Christians. BJP sponsored Hindutva hateful ideology, cow vigilance squads and related lynching and the National Register of Citizens (NRG) scandal; segregating “genuine and fake citizens” in Assam. Modi wants to convert a diverse country like India to a Hindu nation.
Mr Modi has failed both rural and urban India. In rural lndia, Modi has hurt the farmer in three ways. One, his demonetization dried up 40 % of a farmer’s income. Farmers derived income from wages through manual labour. Two, Modi deprived every farmer of Rs 10,000-20, 000 he earned from selling a cow that stopped giving milk to the beef industry. And, third, those very unproductive cows let loose by farmers, tens of thousands of them, have started eating the farmers’ crops. So Modi has literally turned these farmers into chowkidars. They stay awake at night to keep away stray cows from grazing on their fields.
Urban India, which holds 40 % of India’s population, Modi has ended up throttling this part of India too. First by his demonetization drive which crippled India’s so-called unorganized sector; accounts for 80 % of the non-formal economy in the cities. Then Modi also punched this sector by introducing uniformed GST. The promised shining India is nowhere to be seen.
Modi driven by War hysteria to get himself re-elected remarked about Nuclear weapons as “our nuclear arsenal is not for Diwali”. Modi’s remarks on Balakot have also exposed many features of Indian decision making. A Politician of such stature over-riding the Military professionals is detrimental for the national and regional security matrix.
India Media, while projecting the Manic Modi (aggressive posturing), also extensively highlighted the idiocies trying to pass them off as qualities.
Despite all these facts, if the Indian public opts for BJP’s leadership; then good luck to India and the region. Exit polls in India also suggest, idiocy might rule India for another five years.
The writer is a political analyst; views expressed by him are entirely his own. This article was submitted by the writer before the results of the Parliamentary elections were out.