Can Narendra Modi win friends, influence voters?

A week is a long time in politics; a fortnight is an eternity. What seemed like, what was projected to be the penultimate stop in his march to his advertised destination, his elevation as the chairman of the election campaign committee of the BJP at the party’s national executive in Goa, has come quickly unstuck for Narendra Damodardas Modi.

On one level, the very public resignation of Lalchand Kishinchand Advani from all BJP posts the day after Modi’s anointment served to show that the divisions in the party on Modi’s acceptance wasn’t a media-created fiction, as the paid pipers on TV and the internet contend, but a reality.

That such senior leaders like Sushma Swaraj conspicuously absented themselves from the unctuous celebrations of Modi’s elevation was too obvious to be missed.

On another level, the withdrawal of support by the BJP’s partner, the JD(U), after 17 years of cohabitation showed that Modi’s acceptance within the NDA wasn’t assured either. And Nitish Kumar‘s dismissal of Modi as a “shortlived wave” created by “corporate houses” only underlines the obstacles ahead of the Gujarat chief minister.

Sudheendra Kulkarni, the aide of both former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Advani, has today described Modi as an “autocrat” and a “self-centered leader who has shown that he cares two hoots for the party organization and long-time party colleagues in his own state“.

Even prime minister Manmohan Singh has suddenly found the strength to say that “Modi is no threat. People of India know what he stands for… People of India have to draw their own conclusion what they stand for.”

What the developments of the last few days have demonstrated is that the knives are now out in the open. There are some in Delhi who smell trouble for Modi’s Man Friday in Uttar Pradesh, the former home minister of Gujarat, Amit Shah, in the Ishrat Jahan encounter killing case, and indeed some read the urgency with which the RSS and BJP ensured Modi’s elevation in Goa (sparking Advani’s resignation and the JDU pullout), in conjunction with it.

In short, the odds are getting stacked and it is going to take a strong heart, a chhappan ki chhaati, to weather the current and future storms. Can Modi still pull it off and become the BJP’s face for the next election? If he does, will he able to provide the kind of thrust and throttle that the party requires to get close to 200 seats? And if he doesn’t, does his personality inspire enough confidence to woo parties and partners?

Or have all these cards been played by Modi’s detractors too early, giving him more than enough time to recoup?

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32 Responses to “Can Narendra Modi win friends, influence voters?”

  1. harkol Says:

    Let us look at it this way.

    Vajpayee headed BJP was the largest party in 1996, but couldn’t get allies. Was it because Vajpayee wasn’t secular or a good leader?

    No, other opportunists (read Mr. Deve Gowda) saw an opportunity to cobble together a front and form a govt. of their own, because BJP had only 160+ seats.

    When it came to 180+ seats BJP became far more compelling and making a govt. without its support was impossible. Why would a party with 180 seats give support to others, instead of taking support?

    So, ultimately it’ll all matter as to how many seats can BJP win on its own steam. If it crosses 180 seats, then Modi will be the leader. Otherwise, he’d have to wait – like Vajpayee waited.

  2. Nastika Says:

    Can Narendra Modi win friends?

    Yes, he has already won over BSY & Reddy brothers. So KJP, BSR will merge with BJP now.

    Iinfluence voters?

    Not really. The name Modi generats a lot of negativity that majority may not vote for him. But BJP has a chance because of anti-incumbency factor.

    ~*~

  3. Deepak Says:

    Situation is clear, if Modi gets 180+, then NDA will get around 210. Add Amma (around 25-30) and TRS (with 10-15 who will support anyone who promises Telengana). With around 250-260, BJD and small parties will jump on and getting to 272 is possible without Mamta and Nitish. And once the alliesare on board, Modi would have Jaitley and Rajnath who can manage allies and be the troubleshooters like Pranab was for MMS. So winning friends won’t be a problem – if Modi gets 180+.

    Of course, if Modi fails, then its the end of his political ambitions. But not necessarily bad for BJP because they can project Sushma or Rajnath and try to win over Mamta, Jagan, etc and still try for a government.

  4. Gaby Says:

    Or will he ave to wait and wait and wait like Oddvani!

  5. Communal Award Says:

    Short answer: No
    Long answer: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caste_politics_in_India

  6. N S Rao Says:

    Good analysis!

  7. Amrit Sagar Says:

    If Narendra Modi supported by Rahu , then only he will win all as Rahu’s influence is stronger than any other planets or friends.
    Since time immemorial “The Rahu dynasty is governing the Universe” as India got Independence on 15th August 1947 when Lagna rise at Taurus with Rahu resulted in “The Rahu dynasty is governing India ” too with Pt.Nehru’s Rahu bhukti in his Mars dasha bestowed him to be the first Prime Minister of India; Indira Gandhi made Congress two parts in her Rahu bhukti of Jupiter dasha; Rajiv Gandhi became Prime Minister in his Rahu dasha and Saturn bhukti and Rahu antara; P.V Narasimha Rao became PM in his Mars dasha and Rahu bhukti as in the case of Pt.Nehru.
    H.D.Devegowda too became PM in his Rahu bhukti of Venus dasha , now Dr.Singh became PM in his Rahu dasha and Rahu of Sonia Gandhi is at Taurus , the Lagna of Independence chart with Rahu.
    Rahul Gandhi is running with Rahu bhukti from 9th June 2013 to 27th June 2014 as in the case of Pt.Nehru and P.V.Narasimha Rao , hence Rahul Gandhi will become Prime minister though congress’I’ will face set back and UPA face setback ; but, Rahul’s Rahu will bestow him Prime Minister post before 27th June 2014.
    Amrit Sagar

  8. asha Says:

    Sudheendra Kulkarni is a loser dyed in wool commie who migrated to BJP in search of greener pasture. Of course ABV and LKA welcomed him into the fold to be popular with the delhi socialites. Now the proverbial chicken is coming home to roost. Kulkarni and LKA together can destroy BJP and pose serious challenges to Modi on his way to the PM post. This is aided and abetted by the Congress and Rajmata and MSM who have their own hidden agenda to defeat Modi. After all 1000 crores is a lot of money to be left alone and MSM is doing all it can to ruin the chances of Modi. Till yesterday Kulkarni and LKA were persona non-grata and suddenly they are the most secular leaders MSM can find. Both LKA and Sushma are hailed as great leaders by MSM and these 2 cannot win a LS seat without the help of a BJP CM. So much for their popularity. But MSM guys can continue to have their wet dreams :) For further details read teh article in First Post about how Ahmed Patel controls the MSM and creates an image of the Rajmata.

  9. harkol Says:

    Nastika:
    Majority may not vote for him. True. But, this nation is ruled by folks who got minority votes. Congress got 28.6% national vote in 2009, which is 71.4% votes against it.

    So, this nation is ruled by those who have got the least amount of negative votes in largest number of constituencies (aka single largest party). This method is flawed, but this is what we have.

    Individual opinions, such as yours, not withstanding – this is what most surveys effectively say:

    Modi generates more positivity than SoGa/RaGa/MaMo combined. And RaGa alone generates more negativity than NaMo.

  10. Doddi Buddi Says:

    Modi will get around 180; allies if they also win can join NDA; I don’t think Left will make a comeback despite Mamata B getting positively deranged by every passing day!

  11. harkol Says:

    An interesting article on the subject was written by Pratap Bhanu Mehta – http://www.indianexpress.com/news/a-great-deal-of-agreement/1131212/

    He says in many ways Indian leaders are no different from each other in all respects. They are all autocratic, they all have same/similar ideology (perhaps to loot the people’s wealth), they all have a consensus on various things like reservations, hand-out socialism & even political corruption.

    So, NaMo will be accepted if he is seen as a winning horse. People will be fools to think otherwise.

    What exactly is the difference that NaMo can make if all parties have same idea/ideology?

    Only one – Better administration.

  12. Shemej Says:

    When report started appearing about financial impropriety at one of Kazakhstan’s leading banks, Nurbank, in which Rakhat Aliyev was the most well known high profile shareholder that became a big controversy in Kasakhstan. This was because Rakhat Aliyev is the son in law of Kazakhstan president Nursultan Nazarbayev. It became one of the biggest controversies in Kazhakhstan. Two former bank executives mysteriously disappeared. According to the police, these executives were allegedly involved in bank fraud. All reports were suggesting President’s son-in-law’s involvement and Aliyev was accused of abduction and extortion.However, Aliyev’s version is that he is a victim of a political witch-hunt suggesting President is behind this move.President Nursultan Nazarbayev had signed constitutional amendments that effectively allow him to become president-for-life, which son-in-law criticized.

    It was obviously a difficult situation for Khazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev. Imagine, if President or Prime Minister or Sonia Gandhi’s or Advani’s son-in-laws were involved in the biggest bank fraud in India and later accused of abducting bank executives. Most ruling Governments in the third world countries will have a difficult time to come out of such major controversies. Most presidents and Prime Ministers would have resigned or lost their position in similar situation.

    However, Khazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev decided to take the service of world’s second largest Public Relation company to cultivate a positive image in the mind of masses. This company — APCO Worldwide specialises in political Public Relation work– that is to propogate lies/half truths, truths and cultivate a false /exaggerated image about a government or a political leader. This company had earlier worked to improve the image of notorious Nigerian dictator Sani Abacha and others.Abacha had stolen more than $500 million when in power. That is a good news for all dictators and evil rulers in the world. According to another report, Apco helped to coordinate government communications to convince the public of the necessity of war. Its job also included manufacturing public opinion and feedback in supporting the war efforts. If you have money, pay these PR groups, they will create worldwide opinion in favour of Big wars so that you can sell millions and millions of rupees Arms and military equipments and make huge profits. Or get good commissions. Let our former Army chiefs, (not all of them are into arms brokerage), take the help of such firms. These firms will spread lies and half truths and Indian middle class will truely believe the need for an immediate war with Pakistan or China. There will be nice kickbacks if there is a nice war. And there will be at least 5000 guys active in social media networks and internet forums to campaign for the urgent nececissity of a war with our neighbouring nations. If anyone disagree, these english speaking Indian middle class guys and girls will shower abuses on them and silence them.

    All dictators can now take the professional help of such big firms to cultivate good images for them. And continue to loot, kill, lead mafia gangs, send corrupt officers to kill political opponents in encounter killings.

    APCO Worldwide website assure the rulers from all over the world that : “We have a deep understanding of how governments make decisions and how to shape those decisions. It is through this extensive experience that we are able to advise sovereign nations on how best to tell their stories to the rest of the world,” “We operate in all major political capitals worldwide and to the highest standards of ethical integrity. ”

    Former Railway Minister Jaffer Sharief’ son was arrested while accepting 25000 rupees bribe from an autorikshaw driver in Bangalore. Next time all leaders should take 1 lakh rupees minimum and pass on the remaining 75000 rupees to APCO worldwide or any such Public Relation firm so that they will cultivate good news about your image. Corporate Media will be paid to spread lies and half truths. Leading journalists in TV media will be given luxury cars and land as gifts and they will write anything what Lobbyists ask them to write. If you have doubt ask Vir Sanghvi.

    In this context, it is good that Narendra Modi also hired APCO worldwide to cultivate good image for him. If Advani has more money, let him pay more. If Nitish Kumar dont have Ambanis and other corporate groups to pay for him, keep quite.

    The Gujarat government has been paying nearly Rs 15 lakh rupees (ed. about $31,000) a month to ( APCO) since 2009 in order to bring about the image makeover according to a report….. APCO has also been managing Modi’s own behaviour and projection, for which the cost has been over $25,000 per month since 2007 (See Tehelka Report).

    I am not good in Mathematics. But according to my calculation, the amount Narendra Modi and friends pay to APCO can be used to pay more than 300 rupees to every household in Karnataka during Election time to get votes. Congress is doing that. Bellari Reddys were doing that. Modi also buy voters but in a sophisticated way.

    “According to sources in the senior leadership of the BJP, a corporate house close to Modi had commissioned a nationwide survey, which suggested that the saffron party could win as many as 190 seats in the next Lok Sabha elections if Modi was projected as the BJP’s prime ministerial choice.” And this is the reason Modi and RSS is now hurry to project Modi as Prime Ministerial candidate. But they know that BJP can not rule India with 190 seats (Most surveys project NDA to get 180 seats. BJP around 150-160 seats). Once BJP gets 190 seats they plan to poach the remaining votes? Probably RSS will agree to project LK Advani at that time as Prime Minister to win the support of more alliance partners.

    http://www.frontline.in/cover-story/modi-myth/article4666766.ece

    Hence RSS strategy is this. Project Modi as Prime Minister to get votes. Project Advani as Prime Minister after the election to get support of alliance partners including Nitish kumar and Jayalalitha. Any way coalition government may not last more than 2 years. And Modi can try to become Prime Minister after 2015 or 2016. This is their game plan.

    The question is – can Modi attract votes. Yes and No.

    The interesting fact is that each time upper caste segments in Uthar Pradesh is aligning against the ruling party. It voted Mayawati to power to get rid of Mulayam. To remove Mayawati they voted enmasse to Akhilesh last time. As Mayawati, Samajwadi and Congress are in coalition in the Loksabha, there is a re-alignment among the Upper caste voters in Uttar Pradesh. BJP is expected to get benefited with this situation, irrespective of who campaign. BJP getting more seats in the largest state of India has nothing to do with BJP’s organizational strength, good political work or Narendra Modi’s development work. Brahmins and Thakurs in Uttar Pradesh dont want Yadav and SC member as their leader. This is just caste arithmetics. As both Mulayam and Mayawati are facing CBI cases, they have compulsion to support Congress led central government. This is a tricky situation and BJP want to fish in this muddy waters.

    If you and I have money to pay Public Relation company and if you are in the benefiting position of caste politics in India’s two or three bigger states, we can also become Prime Minister. But do you know how to organize massacres?

  13. Vinay Says:

    Shemej:

    Load of bull. Giving money to voters (Rs. 300 per voter as per your calculations) is fraud, plain and simple. Engaging PR firms to bolster one’s image is certainly not fraud. Your convoluted attempts to portray image-enhancing work as another form of bribery is laughable, to say the least.

    Any sane Indian would prefer politicians who do X amount of work and present it as 2X to the public, via PR firms or any other means. Much better than the old crop of parasites who do no work at all, and rely on short term bribes to the illiterate masses to generate votes in the next elections.

    I don’t know what is your motive in constantly bringing up fascism and dictatorships in your Modi-related comments. All these things are Western-oriented concepts. India is not going to become a one-party state or fascist state or dictatorship. Western worldview builds upon their experience in WW2 and before, and all this stuff of “fascism” and “dictatorship” is a common view in Western political narrative. You are just picking up words and phrases from the West and plugging it into the Indian narrative.

  14. Doddi Buddi Says:

    Shemej
    Just put your facts in perspective, it is estimated that Rahul Gandhi’s private jet setting trips to Europe and USA, on and off costs a neat Rs. 30 lakh plus a round-trip. Now you do the math and let me know how many hungry voters Sonia and Rahul can feed in Amethi. Thanks.

  15. dr ramesh Says:

    Looking at the present scenario, NITISH KUMAR looks the best choice for P M. He has all the right credentials for the job.he has worked as a minister in both NDA and THIRD FRONT govts, has a fair idea about inclusive growth.
    His model of development in bihar is much Democratic and humane than modi’s .
    When DEVE GOWDRU was P M, nitish was the railway minister, so even D G would endorse nitish whole heartedly.
    Nitish is far more intelligent and dignified, DOESN’T BELONG TO CORPORATE BOOTLICKER ASSOCIATION.

    Saw a news report,Today there was a meeting conveyed by karnataka govt of police officers, five star hotels and live bands to frame rules for allowing disco, nanga naach, very surprised to find out that even corporates were there to support nanga naach.

    Nanga naach —- desha munda moch.

  16. Faldo Says:

    The fact is that even at its peak in the 1990s the BJP got only around 25% of the votes. Though it has been only marginally losing vote share since then, even the small percentage drop has caused the number of seats to go down below 150 from about 180 seats. Part of this is because some of its core supporters drifted away and no new voters came in to fill the gap. With NaMo it is not as if they hope to gain too many allies or friends but make sure that they maximize their core base and add a few new voters. This could enable them to reach or cross the 180 mark. They could be gambling on this and the inherent contradictions among certain regional parties to help them. Certain parties who have withdrawn support could change their decision if they have a chance to be part of or have a say in the government.

  17. Shetty Says:

    Despite the huge public humiliation after his Jinnah remarks, Advani can’t hide his selfish greed for power or negative mentality. The only way to silence such crooked psyche is to expel him from the party, before further damage is done!

  18. Shemej Says:

    “Engaging PR firms to bolster one’s image is certainly NOT FRAUD.”

    Okay. Accepted.
    At least you have accepted that Modi has employed PR groups (which has notorious track record of successfully cultivating the “good” image of world’ worst criminal political leaders. And this company is an American Corporate the Rashtriya Swayamsevak keep criticizing every single moment).

    What is a fraud. If you do injustice to millions of people without indulging in any illegal practice, then you are not committing any fraud. Essentially the definition of fraud in any nation is defined by the ruling class.

    There are two important questions to be answered here.

    1) Who finance Narendra Modi to employ the APCO Worldwide? Whose money it is? And if these money is paid by “well wishers of Narendra Modi from abroad and corporate houses who are close to Narendra Modi, why they pay for Narendra Modi? What do they expect back when spend huge amount of money from their pocket?

    Obviously no one really pay huge amount of money from their pocket without expecting anything back.

    We all know that India’s biggest Corporate groups are working for Narendra Modi. Why they are so close to him? I have given News report of Court Criticizing Narendra Modi for giving undue favour to Corporate Houses in India.

    See the discussion at this churumuri link
    http://churumuri.wordpress.com/2013/06/14/narendra-modi-is-test-case-of-media-objectivity/

    Now the picture is complete.

    a) Narendra Modi, when in power gives undue favour to Corporate groups thus causing hundreds of crores to the public exchequer.

    b) These corporate in return pay the biggest Public Relation companies to cultivate a false image about Narendra Modi and his government.

    And who are the losers?
    Money doesnt grow on the Trees. Money or wealth has to be generated. We all know that India is witnessing a phenomenon called jobless growth. That means there is an increase in Corporate profitability. But no new jobs are created. Hence, our young generation is not getting good jobs even as the corporates are making huge profit. The money is not getting distributed in the system. Hence, shop keepers are not getting business. Even thought initially there was boom in Real estate segment now even that is affected to some extend. No manufacturing works. Lakhs of people migrated to cities dont get jobs and they are unable to send money back to their home. Automobiles including cars sales have dropped down because big corporates in India are either sending employs out or not giving adequate increments. But year after year corporate profit is only increasing. Why?

    2) To whom this democracy for? Should Indians respect the rule of the land if it is favoring corporates and suppressing the rights of masses and denying their due share?

    My answer to the 2nd question is that, we should obey the rules, but change those rules which favour only Corporates.

    India is a democratic country. Any one can support a corporate candidate as Prime Minister. But that should be done by giving facts. You can not mislead this country by saying lies. I request Narendra Modi only one thing. Instead of CAG and Court coming with facts, let him admit that he is working for Corporate and let him admit that he is giving this much government resource to this particular Corporate. People deserve at least that transparency from a democratically elected government. it is not Janata Dal or Congress leaders who fought against Narendra Modi accusing that he is working agains the interest of farmers and for corporates. it was his own BJP MLAs.

    See this link- http://www.ndtv.com/article/india/gujarat-farmers-protest-narendra-modi-government-s-proposal-for-special-investment-regions-381820

    i am happy to see that even BJP supporters now admit that Narendra Modi is for Corporate and against the interest of the general public of India.

  19. harkol Says:

    Shemej:

    >i am happy to see that even BJP supporters now admit that Narendra Modi is for Corporate and against the interest of the general public of India.

    Have been reading huge amount of utter drivel you have been dishing out.

    The problem with India today is that the govt. is anti-enterprise, and pro-handout. Being pro-enterprise is not about being crony-capitalistic (like Congress currently is).

    Check the net job creation done by Congress in past 9years of rule. It is ZERO to negative. NDA created 100million jobs. UPA managed to destroy over 5million with highest ever unemployment figures in 20+ years. That’s how bad the situation is.

    We can only solve our problems by creating jobs & exporting to bridge our CAD. We can’t feed our population with FSB or MNREGA, without generating enough wealth in the first place. 4% folks paying income tax can’t feed 70%.

    Being pro-enterprise doesn’t mean being anti-public. Being pro-enterprise isn’t equal to being crony capitalist. Any country that needs to progress needs pro-enterprise/corporate policies. They need to invite business, provide a suitable environment for creating jobs.

    India has witnessed over double the inflation of any major economy in the world over last 3-4 years. All items have become 2.5 to 3 times as expensive compared to 2009.

    So, congress is just fooling (whoever can be fooled) to cover their failures with a garb of ideology, even while ruling family is amassing 1,000s of crores. You propounding their theories makes you either an innocent accomplice or an active participant.

    A huge load of crap given out by the ‘Congress media cell” is they are for aam-admi, while their own ‘Damaad’ has called India a banana republic & us citizens as ‘mango people’!! The ruling cabal has nothing but contempt for India, and they simply do not deserve our votes.

    PVN Rao was pro-enterprise. Vajpayee was Pro-enterprise. Between these two, they did more for alleviating the unemployment (thus poverty) in India, than any other Prime Ministers (Check statistics by NSSO, a govt. body).

    The only time India grew and created about 15crore jobs was between 1991-2004, 10crore of these jobs happened between 1999-2004. It is no co-incidence that this duration is when Gandhi-Nehru family wasn’t exerting any influence in governance/policy!!!!

    Between 2005-2010 net job creation was zero, and 2 years hence we are experiencing growth in unemployment.

    So, need of the hour is to empower enterprise, reform, liberalize and create jobs as if there is no tomorrow.

    But, what we get is a stupid, unproductive Secularism debate! BJP was in power for 7 years in this country, the country was better off than under Indira Gandhi’s socialistic secular ‘emergency’!! Advani, who was equally hated as Modi, didn’t cause an ethnic cleansing. Vajpayee & Advani were both RSS pracharaks, they did not become Nazis or autocrats.

    So, if you have anything other than propaganda to discuss, do so. There is no real threat to secularism in India, than there is danger of religious mad hats taking over USA, just because republicans come to power! They may have some weird notions about abortions and may be as Christians as they come, but the secular constitution of USA is upheld again and again.

    Same will happen in India.

    What we need at the moment is not socialism, not secularism. It is enterprise, infrastructure, jobs, economic growth with low inflation for couple of decades.

    ALL OTHER PROPAGANDA STUFF IS GOOD MATERIAL FOR FLUSH TOILET.

    Having voted congress in 2009, with the hope MaMoSingh will do some good, I have now resolved I will never vote congress as long as Gandhi family members are at the helm of affairs.

    I was opposed to Modi earlier (as can be verified by my older pre-2010 posts).

    But, I am now convinced that Modi is the only focal point through which we can get rid of this feudal, venal, corrupt family from our polity.

  20. Kiran Voleti (@kvoleti) Says:

    Congress doesnt need APCO. It already has the entire Indian media supporting it. This includes @churumuri himself. It is a shame that all the so called intellectuals support a corrupt, dynastic, feudal party and its government when the nation needs a clean administration. Perhaps the media elite want poverty not to be eradicated for ages since they thrive on it. All the left leaning “liberals” are a threat to poor people like me. It is only because of leberalization that I am able to write this comment here.

  21. Vinay Says:

    Harkol:

    Your previous post is one of the best posts I have read on churumuri till date, in the 4.5 years I have been frequenting this blog.

    People like Shemej and similar people like Arundhati Roy were all over the place even in 1999, speaking of how India is now ruled by a “Hindu fascist government”. They all said the same thing about BJP then – that Advani would “take over” and draw India towards fascism.

    These people don’t understand that India is inherently secular, and inherently free. It is so, not because of the constitution or what some useless NehruGandhi says, but because the society is inherently secular. Yet, people like Shemej bring up useless unproductive “secularism” and “fascism” debates, like you rightly pointed out.

  22. harkol Says:

    Vinay:

    Mr. Surjit Bhalla has written brilliantly about the stupidity of the folks who tom tom the ‘S’ word, while forgetting everything else. It is an object lesson to those who go on and on about secularism, without understanding what is at stake. He suggests we ban the ‘S’ word and see how the likes of Nitish, Lalu, Mulayam & many in congress will squirm as they don’t have any other record or program to speak of!

    He also says brilliantly that the only known ‘pogrom’ of minorities happened under and by the congress in 1984, when 8,000 sikhs were killed (3,000 in Delhi alone). All ‘communal riots’ of last 3 decades put together won’t match that singular number!! So much for congress giving out ‘Secular’ certificates to people!

    Article – http://www.indianexpress.com/news/tell-me-i-am-mad/1132235/0

    There is also a brilliant article by Meghnad Desai about how Turkey has found growth under a right wing govt. after years of Left wing, secular corruption – http://www.indianexpress.com/news/secularism-in-danger/1132526/0.


    Secularism is an important ideal. But, none of our parties follow it in right spirit. No one party being better than other on its adherence to secularism, thus it cancels itself as an election issue.

    What is relevant is how do we find employment for the approximately 40crore youngsters who will enter workforce in approximately next 7-10 years. That is right – 40+ crore jobs in next decade.

    Our best decade so far is generation of 15 crore jobs between PVN & Vajpayee govts. And we need almost triple the number of jobs than our best decade so far!

    Effectively it means, we need to beat china as the best economy of the world. This is not done by giving ‘handouts’/charity. It is done by enabling the economy, reducing bottlenecks, corruption, crony capitalism.

    So, challenge is enormous for us to be focused on a non-argument called ‘Secularism’! We have already ‘lost decade’. In 2009, I thought that was because of stupid Communists pulling Manmohan Singh down in UPA1. But now I know it wasn’t. Having one more decade lost to ‘sonianomics’ (Socialistic mindless approach) will mean we’ll be crippled for decades to come.

    The bottom line: Secularism won’t feed the hungry masses. Only Jobs can.

  23. dr ramesh Says:

    People of India may give benefit of doubt to modi over secularism issue, secularism is a matter of convenience for political parties.
    People of India, including BJP leaders are more worried about modi ‘s working style, THE TOXIC CAPITALISM he practises. This can cause irreversible damage to social and economical fabric of the nation.
    Granting 1000 acres of farmland bulldozing collective opinion of farmers to cunning capitalists and showing growth is not leadership, it is tyranny.
    His brand of politics does not believe in decentralization of power, panchayat Raj model of democracy. It believes in cconcentration of ruthless power in an individual. In contrast RAHUL GANDHI speaks more about panchayat model of rural governence. A panchayat should have the power to veto a MNC if it feels it is detrimental to the interest of the villages.
    I APPRECIATE rahul Gandhi for the speech he made at the CII meeting, he advised the corporates to respect the complexities and diversities of India. It is India’s strength.
    PERSONALLY even I would back modi, if he stops pleasing CORPORATE TSARS, stop being their mouth piece, show them their rightful place.

  24. the colonel Says:

    in the national shame,at uttarkashi, it was the hindu at his vilest in stripping pilgrims of their money and gold. No prizes for guessing their caste.

    then we have stupid statements that K is sending a relief team for kannidaga’s.

    i.e., only kannidagas will be given assistance.

    the REST of you WAIT.

    today only two choppers are working . some one mentioned their are 700 choppers. So Much for INTELLIGENCE.

    the 2014 elections will be an EYE OPENER for all political parties.

    I Rely totally on all YOUNGSTERS.

    Hope i shall be ALIVE to see this decimation, so i can die gratefully.

  25. Anonymous Guy Says:

    harkol, Secularism wont feed the hungry masses, sure. Problem is in India, nothing can feed the hungry masses.

    If you put aside secularism, you would have regionalism, casteism, languagism, familyism etc. None of these fundamental problems can be solved quickly as long as we have freedom of movement.

    Lee Kuan Yew:India is not a real country. Instead, it is 32 separate nations that happen to be arrayed along the British rail line.

    Any feeding of hungry masses can only come with cultural changes, which might take decades or more to happen; or if some technological breakthroughs happen courtesy of developed nations.

    Modi or anyone else aint doing it.

  26. Shemej Says:

    I really hesitate to do this. This is a very boring way of discussion. However, just for one time, let me answer all major points one by one. I sincerely regret making this very elaborate and cumbersome.

    Question 1:
    “The problem … govt. is anti-enterprise” –

    Response: The subsequent discussion projecting BJP as pro-enterprise shows that this statement is self-defeating.

    (Many authors conclude that, anyone who opposes BJP is supporting Congress. Unfortunately, some of our good friends’ general knowledge and understanding about Indian political scenario is pathetic. However, I respect their opinion, as they only express what hundreds of others sincerely believe or mistakingly understand.)

    There is nothing wrong if a Government is pro-enterprise. Infact any modern government is expected to be pro-enterprise.

    But pro-enterprise doesnt mean that a minister loot public money and build palacial houses for secret mistresses, or build own secret business.

    You dont need to completely believe what his sibling has revealed about him. — http://www.dnaindia.com/mumbai/1286250/report-mahajan-affairs-an-open-book

    There were innumerable reports appearing in the press when he was still alive.

    Three corrupt Telecom Ministers, one intellectual-turned corporate agent and one block-headed lawyer minister, all together destroyed India’s public sector Telecom companies. Sukhram, Mahajan (along with their mistresses), Raja, Shourie and Sibal.

    See this report–

    “Five years after his death, Pramod Mahajan’s dealings with Reliance Infocomm have come back to haunt the former telecom minister. In its efforts to probe all irregularities in the Department of Telecom between 2001 and 2007, the Central Bureau of Investigation is now looking into the share transfer from Reliance Infocomm to three companies.

    In September 2002, a total of one crore shares of Infocomm were issued to three companies , namely, Fairever Traders , Softnet Traders and Prerna Auto. These shares were acquired by the three companies at par, that is at . 1, only. Trouble is, that all these three companies are associated with Ashish Deora. Ashish Deora is also the promoter of Indiaonline, a company he copromoted with Poonam and Rahul Mahajan and Anand Rao, Pramod Mahajan’s sonin-law .

    CBI believes that this share transfer was a kickback to Pramod Mahajan in return of all the favours he doled out to Reliance Infocomm during his tenure from 1999 to 2003.”
    http://articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com/2011-06-09/news/29638490_1_ashish-deora-three-companies-reliance-infocomm

    (Please note that I am not making generalized statements. I give sources, corroborating facts. Any one can use words like :shit, stool etc. Such statments are welcome but please understand people can judge and reach their own conclusions.)

    In fact Shiv Sena the alliance partner of BJP had walked out of Parliament alleging that Mahajan was helping Reliance, (by increasing the BSNL tariff just before Reliance and TATA launching their mobile) at that time (but continued to be in alliance.).

    Later Shiv Sena leader quit party on this issue.

    http://www.rediff.com/news/2005/mar/10inter1.htm

    BJP never ruled India alone. It is NDA which ruled India and if ever a BJP member become prime minister, in the near future, that will happen only with the help of Shivsena. Please understand Shiv Sena is the second largest partner of NDA.

    I think we need to trust Govt partner more than a well wisher about internal conspiracies.

    This is the perfect example of Crony Capitalism. Remember Nitin Ghadkari? Or our own dear Yeddy and Reddy? Vajpayee’s son-in-law was deciding who has to become Communication minister in Congress led UPA government on behalf of certain corporate houses. If that is not crony capitalism what is crony capitalism?

    Who are now helping Narendra Modi? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ms6fxFUD4Zo

    Or hear from their own mouth– Kalyan Singh is the main supporter of Narendra Modi – http://indiatoday.intoday.in/story/babu-singh-kushwaha-paid-crores-to-join-bjp-kalyan-singh/1/167608.html

    I dont need to write volumes about each and every BJP minister to expose how (almost every one of them; if not all) helped phoney people and fraudulent groups to seize the invaluable resources of this great Nation.

    Question 2:
    “Being pro-enterprise is not about being crony-…..”
    Re:
    Now we understand the above statment too is self-defeating.

    What congress practise in India is Crony Capitalism is of no doubt. But BJP is the masters of that art. Narendra Modi is the world champion of Crony Capitalism. I have given references already. If Telecom Scam can ever be considered as corruption, then what Narendra Modi has done also is Corruption.

    http://indiatoday.intoday.in/story/babu-singh-kushwaha-paid-crores-to-join-bjp-kalyan-singh/1/167608.html
    If this is NOT CRONY CAPITALISM, then what is crony capitalism. Read page Number 27

    Question 3:
    “We can … solve our problems by creating jobs….” —
    Re: Agree completely.

    Question 4:
    “We can’t feed … with FSB or MNREGA, without generating enough wealth…..” —-
    Re: I dont want to question this statement. However, the view point indirectly presented by the above sentence (in the context of the whole essay), is a flawed one.

    MNREGA has created jobs in India. I will explain this later. (That needs a big discussion.)

    Question 5:
    “Being pro-enterprise doesn’t mean …”

    Re:
    These are all basic facts. There is no need to repeat what we all understand by 4th standard or latest when in high school classes.

    Enerprise doesnt mean Corporate business. Corporate Business is the opposite word of Enterprise. I will explain this later.

    Question 6:
    “India has … the inflation…. ”

    Re:
    India’s present corporate model of Business is directly responsible for the high inflation. As I said earlier, many of these sentences are contradictory to each other or self defeating.
    See this-

    and this –

    http://consortiumnews.com/2011/09/20/the-dark-legacy-of-reaganomics/

    and this –
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/stephen-herrington/reaganomics-fail_b_1617851.html

    In the case of India, finance is coming to the system from Speculative Capital (FIIs) or Loan borrowed from foreign banks etc. When a lot of cash is pumped into the system, it creates liquidity in the system and that leads to high inflation.

    If you look at India’s economic boom, that happened because of a) boom in social sector (software, banking, real estate) and b) high growth in manufacturing for a few years. Let us understand this way– Software export brought lot of cash. Software employees have lot of cash in hands. They invested in Real estate. Lot of cash in the system. Lot of apartments. So more demand for metals. That led to More manufacturing. Overall, more cash, more buying hence more inflation. This is one side of the story.

    The other side is this- Reaganomics played a role in controlling Trade Unions, Agriculture was not giving comfortable profits and hence Farmers moved into big cities. When big landlords went to cities to invest in land etc, there was no capital available in the rural areas. Wages were very low in agriculture, hence workers moved to big cities looking for jobs. Hence there is a shortage of agricultural labour in the system. As a result of this there was a stagnation in the agricultural system.

    As India employs 65% of its population in agriculture, and only 2% in Software, this means 2% of population with lot of cash and 60% with no cash in hand.

    This means less consumer spending. This resulted in less demand. (except for a short period when agricultural loans were written off).

    Besides, there was economic recession in the west. It affected India’s export oriented business like software and Apparel. 9% of Indians live in apparel, textiles and garments. When 60% (agri) + 10% (textiles) started starving, there was less consumer demand and stagnation in the economy. This is the stagflation we are facing now.

    I just touched this point here. I will come with more details later.

    But to say that Corporate will give more jobs to India is the best joke I have heard ever since George Bush saying: “Inflation is because Indians and Chinese eat more.” George Bush was a joker. Are we?

    Question 7:
    “So, congress is just fooling …. to cover their failures ….”

    Re:
    Why is this relevant here? What is new in this? Like I said earlier, statments like “water boils at 100 degree” “Sun rises in the east”… This discussion is already boring and these types of statements dont give any insight about anything new…. (I never voted Congress and would never vote. It is the author who admits he has done one foolishness earlier and want to do one more foolishness to rectify the first.)

    Question 8:
    “But, what we get is a stupid, unproductive Secularism debate!”

    Re:
    Discussion about secularism IS PRODUCTIVE. One need to have a more comprehensive understanding about how a society progress. Unfortunately most people see only one side of the issue.

    We can not have communal riots for 200 days in an year and boast about becoming a world power. Please try to understand why British imperialism got bankrupted and freed its colonies after second world war. It is economically unviable to fight with its people and to control internal feud. Please understand what happened to Hyderabad after the Telegana agitation. What happened to kashmir Tourism after Kashmir agitation?

    If NOT ONE of those thousands of innocents killed in communal riots is related to our dearest author, then we are also happy. However, we can not be sadistic to be insensitive to those helpless people who were mercilessly killed, raped and brutalized.

    Question 9:
    “BJP was in power for 7 years in this country, the country was better off than under Indira Gandhi’s socialistic secular ‘emergency’!!”

    Re:
    This is completely wrong.

    a) BJP, RSS or one of its outfit is/are behind majority of the communal riots in independent India. There are articles, inquiry commission reports, books with evidences to support this. If some one is NOT SLEEPING, THEN IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO WAKE HIM/HER UP.

    b) I dont support Indira Gandhi’s emergency. But RSS, BJP and other right wing elements (including the Right wing group within Congress led by SK Patil and Nijalingappa) were getting support from anti National forces to destabilize India. Secondly, Indira Gandhi herself received money from CIA and she had indulged in anti national activities. These are all well documented. Search for Patrick Moynihan and read reports and one can further read published books. Or read the revelations of former CIA officials, including official revealations and autobiographies.

    Question 10:
    “Advani, who …, didn’t cause an ethnic cleansing.”

    Re: When ethnic cleansing was happening in Gujarath, Advani was very much a Minister. He led Rathyatra and was one of the mastermind to create communal polarization in India that killed hundreds of innocents, both Hindus and Muslims. There are disturbing questions raised about certain people accused of/ certain issues related to Parliament Attack… Those questions are unanswered. Please note that Adolf Hitler was a democratically elected mass leader who was worshiped by his people. No one found fault with any of his henious crimes when he was still alive.

    “Ethnic cleansing” to believe in an ideology that certain people alleged from a differernt ethnicity should be killed or suppressed and then try to implement this politics of hatred. Advani believed in such an ideology, masterminded to implement it, and is responsible for ethnic cleansing both in Gujarath and elsewhere.

    If we ever fail to apply our rational thinking power and let ourselves guided by emotions and impulses, that is the worst tragedy that can happen in a human’s life. Some times asking relevant questions may be dangerous. But no responsible and patriotic person should shy away from asking important, and relevant questions, out of fear.

    Question 11:
    “Vajpayee & Advani … did not become Nazis or autocrats.”

    Vajpayee and Advani are/were Nazis. I have given evidence in my earlier comment under a different post. It is not I who say Vajpayee and Advani are Nazis. It is their own words. Vajpayee and Advani are following RSS ideology, which without any hiding glorify ethnic cleansing. I have not quoted from my personal biography, I have quoted from RSS manifesto. Both Vajpayee and Advani read this manifesto and agreed to that political project (of implementing Nazi political program) in India.

    Though, personally I beleive the author has open mind, the above comment raises doubts about certain issues.

    Question 12:
    “There is no real threat to secularism in India, …,..”

    Re: “This is running away from facing difficult questions. When shool children are asked why you failed in maths paper, some of them would answer: “In my class, even the best student has failed in maths.”. If the best student in my class has failed in mathematics, that is not justification for I not getting pass marks. I think we need to grow up a little more. USA is not even a democratic state. It is a leading Terrorist state according to Noam Chomsky.

    Question 13:
    “ALL OTHER” (Biased) “PROPAGANDA STUFF IS GOOD MATERIAL FOR FLUSH TOILET.”
    Re: Indeed. We can have propoganda. But propoganda, without supporting facts is like making outgoing call without currency.

    Question 14:
    “Having voted congress in 2009, …..”

    Re: (I guess millions and millions of people in this world see what they want to see. Their views are colored. They use their heart and not their superb intelligence.)

    It is like saying, “I earlier believed the world will end in year 2000. After realizing my foolishness, now I believe world will end in 2015.”

    Question 15:
    “But, I am now convinced that Modi is the only focal point through which we can get rid of this feudal, venal, corrupt family from our polity.”

    Re:

    : )

  27. Shemej Says:

    “Unfortunately, some of our good friends’ general knowledge and understanding about Indian political scenario is pathetic.”

    This sounds a bit rude. But I didnt mean that. What I mean is, “if any one think those who criticize BJP automatically support Congress”, is a pathetic understanding of politics. I sincerely apologize, the way the original sentence was phrased. I was half sleeping while typing. I am sorry.

  28. harkol Says:

    Dr Ramesh:
    >Granting 1000 acres of farmland bulldozing collective opinion of farmers

    The concept of ‘eminent domain’ is that the govt has the privilege to compulsorily ‘purchase’ or ‘expropriate’ private property for better utilization for better public purpose or economic development.That principle is unexceptionable and works in all countries around the world.

    What is the logic of giving hundreds of acres to private companies? It is that they can build an enterprise and generate jobs that are more productive.

    Why it doesn’t work well in India? The rampant corruption & crony capitalism of political class in notifying/de-notifying the lands creates a land scam.

    Consider the land acquisitions done by your favorite Gowda family during 2006-07! They acquired 1,000 acres of land in Ramanagar for a purported SEZ called “Gandhi City”, giving peanuts to farmers. This entire thing turned out to be a scam! Kumaraswamy govt. acquired over 27,000acres around Bangalore. Nandagudi SEZ was one such. Farmers of course are losers in this cynical game of politicians – all parties are involved.

    It is happening all across India, which needs to be addressed through an legislative mechanism that makes land acquisition more difficult and equitable to farmers.

    >RAHUL GANDHI speaks more about panchayat model of rural governence

    Ha Ha Ha!!

    Gandhis have been speaking of Panchayat Raj for 3 decades! Done Zilch.

    Tyranny? The only true tyrant India has seen came from Gandhi family.

    The truth is – no politician in India wants to decentralize power. Modi is no exception.

  29. harkol Says:

    Anonymous Guy:

    Thanks for the Lee Kuan yew link. Has interesting observations.

    But, your observation that there are other challenges than Secularism is unexceptionable. However, my point was the discussion we must be having is about how we’d create jobs for the 40cr people entering the workforce in next decade.

    So, obviously it means, other than secularism we also need to push aside stupid & divisive agendas like regionalism, casteism etc.

    I don’t like Modi not apologizing for 2002, and do feel he has some explaining to do on a few things. I always felt he is unsuited to be the PM.

    But, In the past year, I have revised my view. Especially because he is the only leader who spoke of the need for growth, jobs and focus on economic agenda.

    I said to myself, he can’t be worse than the plethora of crooks who have ruled us, at least he is speaking the right language.

  30. Anonymous Guy Says:

    harkol, Maybe things wont get worse under Modi. Maybe they will. But he wont solve the problem you are talking about either way. Poverty and lack of jobs is endemic to our country. Without fundamental change in the concept of India, there will be no solution at least not for decades or more, till nature sorts things out, if at all. Let me tell you one change which could have happened at independence – if Mysore was an independent country, there would be a chance for us to gain prosperity in our lifetime and be on par with Western countries. Modi or Manmohan Singh or Rahul Gandhi (rather Kumaraswamy or Yeddy or Siddu) would not have mattered. Given a common language, it would be easier to solve the other problems of religion and caste. Sadly for us, it didnt happen and we live on surrounded by poverty.

    Getting back to the original question: Immaterial of what yarns Modi’s corporate PR machine spins, and the internet RSS types holler; he isnt going to have a great influence on the voter outside of Gujarat. As we saw in Karnataka elections, where BJP lost to Congress inspite of Modi campaigning.

  31. Anonymous Guy Says:

    harkol,
    “no politician in India anywhere wants to decentralize power”

  32. harkol Says:

    Anonymous Guy:

    Modi was not a factor in Karnataka. But, he would be in 2014.

    Also, having separate linguistic nations downwards of Himalayas is a concept that was tried prior to Mughals. States just fought among themsleves. So, I am not sure it is a good idea to have some 20+ nations in geographical boundary of India.

    Can’t think of keeping on fighting Karnatka-Tamilnadu wars, with border being just 40km from Bangalore!!

    However, I do agree with you that decentralization of power, especially autonomy to cities (perhaps making them city-state like Delhi) is essential for better governance.

    Who will bell the cat?

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