"Victory has a thousand fathers, but defeat is an orphan," observed John F. Kennedy. The BJP had the winning duopoly of Narendra Modi and Amit Shah through several winning state elections. Everyone seemed to hail and cheer the leader and the master strategist.
Now that the dust of campaigning, voting, exit polls and actual counting has settled in Bihar, the analysis has begun. BJP, the new Congress, says their leadership will discuss and decide what went wrong. But the writing is very clear on the wall. Provided they care to look and read.
A politician thinks of the next election, a statesman worries about the next generation, we have learnt in history. During this protracted and highly charged election season in Bihar, the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, must rise to the level of a statesman and send the message of communal harmony to the Seemanchal area that votes in the fifth and final phase of polling on November 5. That will be a message to the world too.
As the two major coalitions in the Bihar Vidhan Sabha election contest continue to prophesy a clear victory for themselves, we will know in a week the people’s verdict. In the meantime, predictably, the electoral battle has hinged broadly on three factors: (a) How the Mahadalits and the Extremely Backward Castes (EBCs) have voted? (b) Which way the majority of women has tilted? and (c) Whether or not the Prime Minister has retained his appeal to the younger aspirational generation.
At time when people are changing their Facebook profile to support the Digital India programme with the vision to transform India into a digitally empowered society and knowledge economy, I write in intense grief that witch-hunt still exists in Indian society.
On Monday, October 19, in a general election, the Canadian voters threw out Stephen Harper, the Conservative Party Prime Minister for two terms (nine years). According to the majority of Canadians, Stephen Harper, going into his second term, had become very overbearing. He enforced his conservative policies, slashed down social services programs, favored wealthy to become more rich, denied environmental problems and suppressed dissent not only from the academic or scientific community but also within his own party.
A number of writers in India have recently returned their Sahitya Akademi (National Academy of Letters) awards in protest of government silence on violence.
An estimated mob of 200 Hindus recently lynched a 50-year-old Muslim worker Mohammad Akhlaq for presumably eating beef at his home in Dadri, a small village near Indian capital New Delhi. They also severely injured his son Danish.
"All politics is local," Tip O'Neill, the former U.S. Speaker of the House of Representatives, is reputed to have once observed.
In the context of the ongoing Bihar Vidhan Sabha election also, the politics depends on what the pulls and pressures are in each constituency. From a distance, it’s difficult to gauge the public mood and therefore the voting trend. Even the reporters on the ground send mixed signals.
India has never been a communal and theocratic country. Unity in cultural and religious diversity has always been the essence of our political system. The Jinx as beef reminds us again that the onetime British Raj used it to divide and confuse people.