Friday, May 29, 2009

Has BJP become a party of Arm Chair Politicians?

Sangh Parivar are often referred as the last of Gandhians for their traits of simple living and leading by example. Only Sangh has glorious tradition of pracharaks who dedicate their life for the nation without desire for any returns. In fact, most of pracharaks fade away from public life as unsung heros. Most of Die hard sangh activists avoid publicity like plague,  shun luxury and move around by public transport and lowest-class compartments.  

Three central aspects of the Sangh's work are typically Gandhian, and are also the key to its success.  One is its grass-roots work, its impressive record in actual social service, which is far larger and more deserving of a Nobel prize than Mother Teresa's heavily foreign-financed operations. 

The second Gandhi-like aspect of the Sangh's success is its religious dimension.  Just like Tilak, Aurobindo and Gandhi made the independence movement into a mass movement by giving it a religious dimension, Sangh-affiliated organizations and individuals are not shy about their Hindu moorings. 

The third Gandhian trait in the Sangh's style of functioning is the moral dimension which it gives to its politics.  Sangh-affiliated organizations are sincerely dedicated to the well-being of their country and society without expecting personal benefits in return.

However in spite of being part of this glorious tradition, One get a distinct feeling that the BJP leadership has not adopted these lofty ideals and in the process has lost touch with the mass. Today it seems that BJP leadership is trying to win over electorate thru high decibel low substance discussions in air-conditioned TV chat rooms. It is ironical considering  BJP is often seen as a victim of adverse publicity with almost the entire visual and print media determined to undermine its growth and promote congress and its ilks. Foundation for this defeat was laid on the day BJP held its newly constituted office-bearers’ meeting in full media glare. But for the full blast televising of the remarks at the office-bearers meet, the events that led to former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Uma Bharati’s expulsion from the party could have been different

There is a famous saying in Kerala, you will certainly fall into water if you have one foot astride two boats. If you would like to see an example of “One foot astride two boats” look no further than Hindutva policy of BJP. It seems that the far-reaching ambitions of Hindutva were an embarrassment for the BJP and even the term Hindutva was whitewashed as “cultural nationalism” for the benefit of “secular ears”. In the process confusing and alienating their core constituency. They should have known a bird in the hand is worth two in the Bush. In fact, some leaders went overboard with their actions to appear ‘liberal’, mistakenly imagining it would be a good ploy for projecting their own candidature over rivals.

The organization which rose from modest electoral beginnings to govern the country thru proactive and aggressive campaigns on issues close to heart of masses is currently perceived to be reacting to events and failing to take the initiative by outlining authoritative new and sustainable policies. for some time it seemed that the entire leadership is afflicted with Foot in Mouth ailment. On key issues like the employment guarantee scheme there was little credible response and the fate of the Kanchi Shankaracharya only elicited a half-hearted and ambiguous reaction.

It high time that BJP introspect and undertake a stern and merciless dissection of its shortfall. BJP leadership need to realise that Rome was not build in a day!

No comments: