Now that he has proved his pseudo-secular critics and detractors wrong, the question is: what next for Narendra Modi? In an SMS sent to mediapersons after his victory, the Gujarat chief minister said he was “CM” and he would be “CM”. But whether he meant chief minister or “common man” no one knows. But that hasn’t stopped TV channels from speculating furiously on whether, having conquered Gujarat, his ambitions would be seeking a larger national canvas.
In this YouTube video, courtesy of CNN-IBN, the economist and writer Lord Meghnad Desai strikes the contrarian note. He says Modi’s victory, contrary to the verdict of most pundits, is not going to weaken BJP but is actually going to help the BJP win the next general elections. Far from creating a rival power-centre, Lord Desai bravely predicts that Narendra Modi will be PM after Lal Krishna Advani.
Questions: Will Modi be PM, one day, some day? Will Moditva—aggressive cultural nationalism + development + personality + security—be acceptable across the nation, especially in States where the population of the minorities is larger than in Gujarat? Will it be acceptable among the allies of the National Democratic Alliance, or will there be no need for pesky allies if Modi can replicate his Gujarat model? Or is everybody counting the chickens before they are hatched?