By Arun Srivastava
It was not simply like devil quoting the scripture. But more than that; the action that manifest change of strategy by the BJP. Amit Shah politically acknowledging that resorting to hatred slogans like “goli maaro” and using derogatory language against the Muslims during the Delhi assembly elections has ominous intention and must not be taken at the face level.
It is a known factor that the politics of hatred propagated and practiced during the election by the saffron brigade has been primarily responsible for moral shattering defeat of the BJP. This shattering defeat has really come as a crude shock. The Modi-Shah combination had visualised that thrust on the ultra-nationalism and projecting Muslims as the anti-national force would help the party consolidate its Hindu face and help it win the elections.
No doubt proverbially the peoples’ memory is too short but it is certainly not so fragile to forget what Modi-Shah said during the campaigning for the elections only a month back. Both the leaders have presented the election as a referendum on the CAA and NRC. The BJP had used the election as an instrument to isolate the Muslims from the main stream of the politics and project them as the benefactor of Pakistan.
It is an open secret that the person trying to present himself as a pious soul has in fact like his boss Narendra Modi, has been the symbol of divisive politics. Recall what he uttered during electioneering; he did not miss any opportunity to speak hatred against the Muslim. He even ignored the abusive and derogatory remarks made by his Union ministers against Muslims. Shah yesterday said that the BJP leaders must not have spoken wrong things. He maintained assiduous silence even while Prakash Javdekar accused the AAP leader and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal as terrorist.
His shifting of the blame underlines the change of his political track and it has been intriguing. One thing is absolutely clear that this shift in stance does not in any manner manifest the change in the ideological and political line of the party and the government. It is primarily meant to create confusion in the minds of the people.
By seeking to know from his rank and file whether this hate speech may “have cost the party” is simply a tactical move to divert the attention of the cadres and steer clear of blame game and continue to have a firm grip on the party. He was apprehensive of the fact that the Delhi defeat would trigger dissension in the party and prove to be moral booster for the leaders who have been contemplating for some time to challenge the hegemonic politics of Modi.
Shah’s statement also demolishes the hallo created around him of being the Chanakya of the modern BJP, How could the Chanakya not comprehend what was in store for the party in future. Shah’s statement at the Times Now Summit 2020, emphasising that the BJP would win 45 of the 70 seats in the Delhi Assembly underlines his poor understanding of the political and social culture of the people.
Self-criticism has been an alien concept in the saffron brigade. The word of the supreme leader is like the word from Ramayan and Geeta. Any attempt of self-criticism is like admission of failure which is not permissible in the organisation. Besides the threat to get the image tarnished the other reason has been the erosion of credibility. The entire operation points to the autocratic style of functioning.
In Delhi’s case too Shah instead of accepting and admitting his failure and owning up the hate campaign he had unleashed in the form of “electric shock at Shaheen Bagh”, he put the blame on others This underlines utter lack of morality and moral conviction to own mistakes. Ironically Shah stuck to his known stated position on Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) and the National Register of Citizens. He made it clear that people support CAA and NRC will vote for BJP. It was a referendum.
What is nevertheless important to note what he said. His electoral arithmetic might have proved wrong, but that didn’t mean the “ideology” he had propagated during the campaign had been rejected by the people. He is on mission to create confusion in the minds of voters in Bihar and Bengal. To assuage peoples feeling he claimed that the leaders who had made such remarks had been pulled up. But this is far from truth. If Shah was sincere, he would have initiated disciplinary action against MP Parvesh Verma who had publicly said that lakhs of people gather at Shaheen Bagh and “they could enter houses, rape and kill your sisters and daughters”. Most unfortunately Shah out right denied this and said “no one said wives and daughters will be raped”.
Results of the Delhi election made it abundantly clear that their divisive politics was un acceptable and they must change their tt5itude. But unfortunately it appears from the statement of Amit Shah that the BJP leadership is not inclined to make a shift. For them any such attempt would defeat the mission of transforming India into a Hindu Rashtra. True enough on the contrary it provides the insight that Modi-Shah are determined to put more energy and effort to galvanise the RSS concept of Hindu Rashtra. (IPA Service)