dr. james kottoor(Chicago)
The writer of the article: ‘India is not shimmering’, (read it below), Manish Tewari is a lawyer and was the UPA’s minister for Information and Broadcasting. Currently, he serves as a distinguished Senior Fellow with the Atlantic Council based in Washington DC.
(Note: What is striking about his article is that when public opinion in the country is all for a possible victory for a BJP government in 2019 under the leadership of the all powerful duo, Modi and Amit Shah, Tewari predicts a possible doom’s day for the party.
In all democracies governments survive on the strength of public opinion which provide either a tolerable or brute majority in the parliament. Ever since Modi got a brute majority in the 2014 elections, he has been winning more state elections and bringing them under BJP rule. His latest big catch was UP. Now he has succeeded to split Nitish and Laloo, and managed to reinstall Nithish as the Bihar CM with BJP support which is as good as saying that Bihar also has become a BJP ruled State. That gives the present BJP Sarkar at the Centre greater chance to win 2019 general elections hands down.
Dark clouds threatening
But, it is true, there are too many ill-foreboding dark clouds on the horizon for the BJP which are not given wide publicity among the public, especially the ‘cattle class’ who would be voting in 2019 with their usual herd mentality.Once they are duly publicized, the writer thinks, Modi’s chances of winning the next election is slim. So he highlights a number of them.
During the short span of three years the BJP Sarkar has made Hindustan, a Lynchistan, literally. So many poor dalits have been murdered in the name of ‘Holy Cow’. What answer have we got to give to questions like: “Why these lynchings weren’t taking place between 2004-14 of UPA rule and why have they become a norm these past three years?” He reels out statistics one after another. In June 2017 economic growth dropped to 0,4% from 7% in the previous year, so too Industrial production to 1.7% from 8% in the previous year, shocking!
So many suicides?
In the farming sector, 8,007 farmers-cultivators and 4,595 agricultural labourers committed suicide in 2015. Alarming! Terrifying! In 2016 the figure was much bigger. Unbelievable! In the area of job creation when the previous UPA government created 21 lakh jobs in the first two years Modi could create only 4.4 lakhs. Add to all this, India’s internal and external security is at grave threat. Kashmir is burning, Maoists are killing innocents, so are our soldiers being eliminated by Pakistani intruders and what is worse China is crossing our borders and ordering us to retreat or else! The whole nation is living through a period of fear, terror and anxiety, instead of the “Acche Din” promised.
It is not likely that the voting public will forget these things too easily when it comes to elect a new government in 2019. On the basis of statistics and facts on various areas, instead of the promised “Sab ka sath, sab ka vikas,” the BJP Sarkar has brought decline instead of growth, division instead of unity, infightings, murder of innocents and tears to Dalits, Muslims and poor sections deprived of jobs to earn their daily bread.
But all of them have a vote each for or against those who would be asking for support in 2019. When Congress government got drowned in corruption they used it against them. If they cast it against the BJP in 2019, who is going to gain? That is the big question Manish Tewari raises.
It is Nithish Kumar’s somersault or "great betrayal" of the secular forces to join the communal forces of Modi and his assertion "There is no stopping Modi in 2019" that prompted Manish to write the article below. There is hardly any clean leader among politicians. Even Nitish whose name was in circulation as a possible leader to oppose Modi in 2019 has proved himself to be no exception. Men of vision, conviction and action are hard to find anywhere. In politics all are power hungry which causes kaleidoscopic changes to happen.
Tired of the accumulation of corruption, a voting public threw out the Congress regime. Tired of the endless list of unfulfilled promises the same voting public may not hesitate to dump in the dustbin even the present BJP sarkar. So let the Modi sarkar perform or perish! james kottoor, editor, ccv.
Please read below Manish Tewari’s article:
India is not shimmering,
it is simmering
Written by Manish Tewari, in the Indian Express, August 1, 2017
The Bharat-India cleavage has widened to an unprecedented degree. The disconnect between ground narrative and public discourse is nothing short of hallucinatoryTwitter
“Modijikemukablemein koi nahinhai (Modi has no challenger).” Thus spake Nitish Kumar, chief minister of Bihar, the neo-convert to the NDA camp when asked about the possible outcome of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. But come 2019 or even earlier, the Chief Minister may have to eat his words if not his hat.
Notwithstanding the deployment of North Korean television channels to script a narrative of invincibility around the BJP, the systematic insinuation, innuendo and downright lies about Opposition leaders as well as the regular abuse and misuse of investigative agencies and the law enforcement machinery, the fact remains all is not well on the ground.
India is not shimmering, it is simmering. The Bharat-India cleavage has widened to an unprecedented degree. The disconnect between ground narrative and the public discourse is nothing short of hallucinatory.
There is unprecedented farmer distress in the country.As many as 12,602 persons involved in the farming sector– 8,007 farmers-cultivators and 4,595 agricultural laborers –committed suicide in 2015, according to figures provided by the central government to the Supreme Court.Union agriculture minister Radha Mohan Singh told Parliament that according to National Crime Records Bureau data for 2016, which is yet to be published, 11,400 farmers committed suicide; in 2015, the number was 12,602.
From Tamil Nadu to Mandsaur in Madhya Pradesh and even in the food bowl, Punjab, falling farm incomes are driving farmers to take the extreme step of ending their lives.Similarly, the industrial scenario is dismal. In June 2017, eight core sectors of the economy grew by a dismal 0.4% , down from 7% for the corresponding month in 2016. The growth in Index of Industrial Production (IIP) was 1.7 per cent in May 2017, as compared to a growth of 8.0 per cent in May 2016.
As opposed to 380 lakh new jobs that India required in the 38 months this government has been in office, job creation or job growth for 2015 and 2016 (April-December) stood at 1.55 lakh and 2.31 lakh in numbers respectively. The former minister for rural development Jairam Ramesh recently underscored this worrying downturn when he said, “In the first two years of the Modi government, only 4.4 lakh jobs were created in the organized sector as opposed to 21 lakh jobs created during the first two years of the UPA-II government.”
Demonetization and the implementation of the flawed GST have further broken the back of the informal sector of the economy leading to widespread chaos. The GDP growth numbers evidence this phenomenon. In the fourth quarter of 2016 the economy clocked only 6.1% which at 2004-05 base year translates into a measly figure of 4.1% only.
Social harmony has been torn to shreds with Hindustan acquiring the notorious sobriquet of Lynchistan – all thanks to the active encouragement and support of the ruling dispensation, notwithstanding the pro-forma condemnation by the prime minister once in a while. It does not require rocket science to discern the truth. You only need to ask why these lynchings weren’t taking place between 2004-14 and why have they become a norm these past three years?
Internal security lies in tatters. Kashmir is up a creek without a paddle. It is a volcano waiting to explode again as it did last year after Burhan Wani was killed by security forces last year. Maoist activity is on the rise. From January 1-July 15, 170 deaths in 504 incidents have taken place. The North East is on the boil with the Gorkhaland violence having peaked this summer.The 47-day-long indefinite shutdown, which started on June 15, is the longest so far in the picturesque hill station which had last witnessed a 40-day bandh in 1988 by the Gorkha National Liberation Front and a 44-day shutdown in 2013 by GorkhaJanmuktiMorcha on the statehood issue. Even in the otherwise peaceful state of Tripura, the Indigenous People’s Front of Tripura has upped the ante on their demand to carve out Tipraland— a separate state from Tripura. Meanwhile, there is no sign of the fabled Naga Accord.
However the gravest threat today is to India’s external security. Perhaps, for the first time in the past seven decades the nation is staring at a two-front situation with an aggressive Pakistan and a belligerent China breathing down our neck with only ten days of war fighting reserves at our disposal. It would be a strategic blunder to take Chinese president Xi Jinping’s threats lightly. A conflict, limited or otherwise, seems imminent at a time and place of China’s choosing. How prepared is India materially, morally, physiologically and logistically beyond the rhetoric of muscular nationalism?Even on the benchmark of hyper-nationalism, the current government says one thing in New Delhi and does another tango with Pakistan on the sidelines of a security conference in Moscow.
Is all this reality lost on the people of India? Is Modi the pied piper of Hamlyn leading the nation over a cliff with people more than willing to do his bidding? The answer is a Big No. People are waiting, like they did in 2004, to speak up at the ballot boxes — when Shining India was unleashed upon them by the late Pramod Mahajan and Vajpayee bit the dust. What is even worse today is the trampling of fundamental freedoms and the spectre of an undeclared emergency that hangs low in the air. A great evil stalks our land. People understand that it has to be vanquished under any or all circumstances.
All that it requires is a lightning rod to crystallize that anger and it will emerge in the next 12 months. Remember Modi also emerged as a challenger in 2013 less than a year before the 2014 elections; today, we still have an effective twenty months to go. Nitish Kumar could have been that lightning rod, but he blinked, probably miscalculating that a bird in hand is better than two in the bush.
However fortune always favours the brave as many of us learn at our own peril.Nitish Kumar’s moral courage quotient is on the anvil.
(Manish Tewari tweets @manishtewari)