Communalists like me in India are a wee bit dazed at the moment by the way the election results have unfolded in India. While, victory by NDA (led by a communal BJP) seemed improbable; the contrary (victory of UPA) did not seem a possibility either. To that end, I had stuck out my neck last time (http://shashwatdc.com/2009/04/who-will-be-the-18th-pm/) and declared that Congress will lose the hustings and so will BJP, and we will be see the emergence of a prime minister from one of the numerous fronts. May 16th proved me, and so many more like me, to be wrong and I stand corrected now. I had completely underestimated the intelligence of Indian voters (though I still quite doubt its existence) and had gone ahead and predicted the future as perceived from my rather urbanised mind. I had forgotten that India lives in the villages, thus the issues that were relevant to me were not the same with that of say a Shankar in Azamgarh.
To be honest, I have never really been able to fathom as to what makes the Indian masses tick; is it a mere battle of survival, so that anyone who gives them the maximum freebie wins or is it caste/religious identity? Considering the way Indians politicians pander and beguile the populace year after year, it is hard to expect them to be sane and rational. Either my fellow countrymen, that number well over a billion, are very intelligent can segregate the wheat from the chaff or are complete idiots who can be easily taken for a ride by wily politicos. Looking at the results of the 15th Lok Sabha elections from this prism, I am a bit more inclined towards believing that Indian voters are more sensible than they are thought to be. And, before all the Congressi start jumping with ‘we told you so’. Let me clarify my statement.
The reason why I detest Congress more from an ideological point-of-view than from a logical one. For me the Gandhi-worship is akin to the dynastical worship of the past; recall how the zamindar babu’s son would be another zamindar himself, similarly, a Gandhi scion has no need to prove himself before being vaulted into the stratosphere of Indian politics. All that is required is a mere name that can be earned by birth or by marriage. This herd mentality, rather common trait among Indians who have been accustomed to be ruled for ages, pisses me no end. And that is the primary reason why I want the callous Gandhi party to be decimated.
It is rather ironical that though the Gandhi family continues with the surname borrowed from Mahatma Gandhi (apparently, Bapu had adopted Feroze Khan, so as to ease his union with Priyadarshini Nehru, who would later on be known as Indira Gandhi) but rather conveniently forgot to also follow his ideals -Bapu never promoted his kith and kin come what may. Yet, the Gandhi dynasty continues to flourish much like the medieval ones; if this isn’t flagrant nepotism what else is?
Thus, when the nation went to the polls, I wished that Congress loses out and the only credible opposition that can defeat Congress is BJP. That’s how I became a virulent Communalist. So, on the 16th of May, when the results started trickling in, I was disappointed as the Gandhi family priest Manmohan Singh would not have to vacate 7 Racecourse Road and 10 Janpath would continue to steer India’s destiny.
And yet, by the end of the day, when I saw the complete picture presented itself to me, the feeling of disenchantment ebbed. While, I was sad that the Congress won, I was happy that it was an emphatic win. I do agree with PM Manmohan when he says that regional parties and satraps are a hindrance to development since all they are interested is in to extract their pound of flesh. So, when the Indian voter thumbed down these regional satraps it was a welcome sign. No more would the government in Delhi be at the mercy of the Singhs (Amar), Yadavs (Mulayam and Lalu), Mayawatis, Paswans, Pawars, Naidus, Jayalalitas, etc. After a long stint of coalition governments, which was nothing more than a cohabit ion of scallywags; we will now have a government that has the mandate and the ability to rule.
At the end of 5 years from now, PM Manmohan (or more probably PM Rahul) won’t have an excuse as to why not they delivered. They not only have the mandate, but also the requisite numbers now.
This is what makes me happy. Meanwhile, I still await the day when we Indians are able to overcome our ‘sheepish mindset’ and stop carrying people on our shoulders only because of their surnames and little else. Going by the ‘rising son’ in the Gandhi family, that day is still quite far off; but I am prepared to wait and bet on a Advani or a Modi any time vis-a-vis a Gandhi.