From ‘Church attacks’ to ‘Muslims lynched’ – how the narrative plays part in politics

Standard

Indian National Congress, the grand old party of India, suffered its worst ever electoral defeat in May 2014. Reduced to 44 seats, it was staring at a risk of being pushed to the margins if immediate corrective steps were not taken.

The reasons for its defeat were pretty obvious – corruption charges, anti-incumbency, lackadaisical leadership of Rahul Gandhi, and ‘Modi Wave’.

However, if you think like a pragmatic and seasoned politician, especially one belonging to the Congress party, these reasons don’t warrant any “corrective” steps. They are transient in nature. Continue reading

For the elitist Indian media, Ram Nath Kovind does not have the ‘class’

Standard

I will be lying if I claim that everyone knew who Ram Nath Kovind was when BJP President Amit Shah, on Monday, announced his name as his party’s choice for the next President of India. Even though he was the governor of Bihar when the name was announced, not many knew about him.

However, the common citizens can be excused for this ignorance. A huge majority of them will fail to name governors of many Indian states, and that’s fine. But what explains the ignorance of journalists, who are supposed to have a better general knowledge owing to them dealing with current affairs on a daily basis?

What was worse, was that this lack of general knowledge was flaunted by many journalists – especially from the English language media – who instead of questioning their own level of political awareness, decided to mock the stature of Ram Nath Kovind – an educated man from humble origins who rose up within the ranks of BJP thanks to become the governor of a state and could now become the next President of India. Continue reading

Did polarization of Hindu votes take place in Uttar Pradesh?

Standard

I was invited to Zee News for discussing assembly election results and there I had the opportunity to talk to Arif Mohammad Khan, who once was a state minister and an active politician, famous for being the Muslim face who quit Congress when Rajiv Gandhi, then enjoying a mammoth majority in Lok Sabha, took steps to overturn the Shah Bano judgment to please Muslim fundamentalists.

As trends appeared to settle down and it looked like BJP was all set to win Uttar Pradesh (and it has swept the elections like the 2014 Lok Sabha elections as I write), some people started talking about kabristan-shamshan and “polarization”. Continue reading

This TV ad explains the importance of ‘appearing’ liberal

Standard

This thought had struck me more than a year ago, when I saw this particular television advertisement. Then the ad slowly disappeared from TV screens. However, I saw it again during the recent India-England cricket series. So hitting a mauke pe chauka, I thought to pen my thoughts finally.

First, take a look at the ad: Continue reading

Narendra Modi has forgotten the 2014 elections, and this is why he has done that

Standard

In May 2014, Narendra Modi recorded an unprecedented victory in the history of contemporary India. I have deliberately called it a Modi victory rather than a BJP or NDA victory, because it indeed was victory of a personality called Narendra Modi.

While hardly anyone gave Congress any chance of it returning to power, and people talked about Modi wave, no one knew about this Modi tsunami that would strike the pollsters, some “intellectuals”, and of course, the Congress party.

People just couldn’t stop talking about 2014 after the results were out. Well, even otherwise it was a hotly debated election, but the results made it burning hot. How it happened, why it happened, does this change India forever, and all kinds of things were discussed.

Whether Modi haters or his ‘bhakts’ – both love to go back to the last general elections, and remind or warn each other that it will repeat or it will not repeat in 2019. Books were written and are still being written about the 2014 elections.

It’s been around 30 months now, but it appears that most people can’t get over the 2014 verdict yet.

Except one man – Narendra Modi himself. Continue reading

“Growing intolerance”, and why Congress loves it

Standard

Indian National Congress, the grand old party of India, suffered its worst ever electoral defeat in May 2014. Reduced to 44 seats, it was staring at a risk of being pushed to the margins if immediate corrective steps were not taken.

The reasons for its defeat were pretty obvious – corruption charges, anti-incumbency, lackadaisical leadership of Rahul Gandhi, and Modi wave.

However, if you analyze them as a pragmatist, these reasons don’t warrant any “corrective” step. They are transient in nature. For example, Congress could simply shrug them off with the following responses, and the party won’t really be wrong: Continue reading

BJP helps Kejriwal become the CM of Delhi, PM next?

Kejriwal
Standard

Consider what every Modi hater would say about Narendra Modi a couple of years ago:

  1. He is just a PR creation. APCO is backing him.
  2. He has support only on internet, can only become Prime Minister of Twitter.
  3. He may win Gujarat, but India is not Gujarat.

Now consider what many BJP supporters say about Arvind Kejriwal of late:

  1. He is just a media creation. Lutyens media is backing him.
  2. He has got only army of AAPtards trending hashtags, no ground support.
  3. He may win Delhi, but India is not Delhi.

Does it sound like Arvind Kejriwal is on his way to become the next Prime Minister of India after winning Delhi thrice, just like Modi won Gujarat thrice earlier? And, well, technically he has won Delhi twice already!

The BJP has to realize that the “bhagoda” Kejriwal is here to stay for the long race. They can continue to reject him like Modi haters used to reject Modi, and thus help Kejriwal become the next Prime Minister of India, or analyze this phenomenon and learn their lessons.

In this article, I try to analyze what made Kejriwal click with Delhi’s audience and why BJP’s strategies failed.

Continue reading

Which Narendra Modi supporter are you?

Narendra Modi
Standard

People voted for Narendra Modi because they wanted development, they didn’t have any Hindu agenda in mind.” is the latest muse of people who earlier religiously believed that “a vote for Modi means crossing the moral point of no return”.

They are the same people who thought that Modi, with help of Amit Shah, “polarized” Uttar Pradesh to sweep the general elections. Now they think that the elections were won on development agenda.

This U-turn by these alleged “intellectuals” is not surprising as they are experts in shifting goalposts; however, what is consistent are their generalizations.

Earlier a vote for Modi was a vote for fascism, and now a vote for Modi has become a vote for development.

This post is not to analyze what a vote for Narendra Modi meant, because many alleged journalists are analyzing that by writing fat books, hoping to make a fat impression and preferably fat money.

This post is about who voted for Modi. Continue reading