Nitish - Between the Devil and the Deep Sea

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Like it or not, caste system is a harsh reality in India. However, in the current scenario in Bihar, the unprecedented growth san development, brought about by Nitish led government has played a catalytic role in this election albeit, not in the forefront.

Caste innuendo was certainly an additional kick that Lalu Prasad picked up at the opportune time to brighten the prospect of winning scenario for Mahagathbandhan in general and for his party RJD in particular. The statement made by RSS chief at such a crucial juncture was catastrophic for the BJP.

On the other side sagacious Lalu took full advantage of this volatile overture of RSS Chief in one hand and the fact of egotistic bête-noir between Mr. Nitish Kumar and Mr. Narendra Modi on the other, and insinuated caste emotion in his nefarious attempt of power grabbing. Both these leaders, Nitish and Modi are so naïve and selfish that they relegated the common good into the background and now, they are exposed in full blown public view. Thus, Lalu Prasad has his way.

Naturally and as always, people in Bihar were left with no choice, and for that matter this whole country has no choice, but to go for Nitish willy-nilly along with or without Lalu. And even if given a choice of lesser of the two evils, let us recollect, “When choosing the lesser of two evils, always remember, it is still an evil.” (Max Lerner).

Modi in Bihar was just a shadow figure in the sense that the masses knew the vanishing act of Modi as soon as election would be over whereas Nitish and Lalu were a live, vivid and vibrant images as far as Bihar is concerned coupled with unblemished track record of Nitish. As was later witnessed, Modi had not many takers and this is very natural.

For this type of mobocracy I love to quote Roseanne Barr who could not but bluntly exposed the hypocrisy of political establishment in United States in these words,

“The American people are sick and tired of this 'lesser evil' garbage they get fed every election year. Both the Democrats and the Republicans do the same evils once they're in office.”

India too fairs no better in this regard.

Therefore, it will be difficult to deduce exactly what played predominantly a part in peoples’ mind that went in favour of Lalu-Nitish combine. It may appear that Lalu’s caste card fetched more votes as the RJD secured more seats than JDU but we should remember that Nitish Kumar’s insistence for declaring him as common agreed figure as Chief Minister had pinched Lalu and his statement of taking a gulp of poison for restraining BJP was his true deposition that reflected his aversion of Nitish. There was no secret then for many who knows Lalu Prasad. By taking Nitish in his side he was killing two birds in one shot. Modi probably was not his first target of his sinister design but he had to settle his score with Nitish at any cost.

Ram Vilas Paswan once accused him of political deceit when he, in his miscalculation, combined with Lalu in earlier Lok Sabha election that saw Lalu rising to the pedestal of crafty Railway Minister of a time.

Ram Vilas later had realized that in order to weaken him, Lalu made his supporters’ votes disintegrate in the constituencies where LJP was contesting so that they shouldn’t grab competitive number of seats but Lalu garnered maximum votes of LJP supporters in RJD’s favor where RJD had fielded its candidates in poll alliance in order to raise the number of RJD MPs. But this is what the politics is all about. Politics is the science of making and unmaking of government. He was successful in his design and got the railway minister’s berth. It was Ram Vilas himself who revealed his compunction after election. Ram Vilas, so far, seems to be keeping Lalu Prasad at arm’s length now.

In common analysis, the RJD got the better deal by winning more seats than JDU in the present election probably through the same design. How cornered Nitish might be feeling now, if at all he has time from celebrating his lame duck position as Chief Minister with both Lalu’s sons elbowing him from both sides in order to prevent him from peeping sideways and also to keep him straight under Lalu’s clout as his ‘guardian’ is anybody’s guess. Both of his sons have snatched the plum departments. The three departments including Finance with RJD, Lalu will recover all his losses of his dry days is one stray opinion.

If the way side talks are to be believed Lalu has decided to thwart any further prospect of Nitish to venture into national politics and thus he has declared his next move to proceed to Delhi to kick out Modi government from national capital thereby ushering himself as a choice for 7, Race Course Road. For Nitish, it was the choice between the devil and the deep sea and he apparently has chosen the later one.

If at all the recent criminal activities is of any sign of revival of the notorious Jungal Raj Nitish is getting closure to his calibrated choice.

Even if there could be a possibility to believe for Lalu Prasad to have come a long way since his Chara activities and the same can be viewed from his reaction against the recent killing spree in Bihar, nevertheless the message that his victory has sent far and wide has given the impetus to the miscreants in unspoken brevity. Consequently, any stern action of the government against the hitherto hibernated criminals is likely somewhere to overlap into Lalu’s domain and that may give rise to contentious issues. The ‘run with the hare and hunt with the hounds’ situation for Nitish would be detrimental in coming days.

One thing is evident that Mr. Modi and Mr. Nitish seem to have kept their individual concern paramount relegating both parties and national interests behind. Excepting that both are yet to be leveled with a corruption charge that is the second achievement of politicians in this country, yet in all surmise and conjecture both have failed in their statesmanship in political arena of this country.

May God save this nation.

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