By Sushil Kutty
Is Adani-Modi and the so-called Hindenburg revelations that brought the alleged murky ties between a prime minister and a stinking rich moneybag an issue in the Tripura assembly elections, the first of nine state assembly elections scheduled for 2023? The answer is, there is so far nothing to indicate ‘yes’ or ‘no’. And this, when one foreign media said “Adani is too big to fall”, which isn’t far from the truth notwithstanding his slide down the world billionaire’s list.
Adani remains the second ranking Indian billionaire. And the billionaire has hired one of the best regarded global law firms to clear his name. That said, there have been only spotty public protests against the alleged “shady links” between the Modi regime and the Adani Group; mostly in Parliament though the BJP’s opponents are emboldened.
There’s also a growing feeling that the Prime Minister has been traipsing on thin ice for far too long. However, to expect the Modi regime to acquiesce to the Opposition’s demand for a probe will be too much to expect. The Opposition can only stall Parliament functioning. The demand for an impartial probe will be met with stiff resistance.
There are certain men in history whose mastery over deception have scripted false histories and the Opposition is up against one such figure. The US-based Hindenburg Research, which earns its bread from short-selling, hasn’t come up with clinching evidence to nail Modi’s “indeeds” to Adani’s “deeds”, its “scathing report” notwithstanding.
Where is the proof of accounting fraud, of market manipulation that indict the Modi government? Just because Gautam Adani and Prime Minister Narendra Modi share warm Gujarati vibes and have their own versions of “rags to riches” yarn doesn’t prove they were using less than fabulous modus operandi for one of them to get billionaire-rich quickly using the other’s vantage position in the Government of India.
Such allegations will drown in massive amounts of grapes are sour rhetoric. The Opposition needs more than sloganeering and catcalls to dig the Modi regime’s grave. And the industrial conglomerate meets Hindutva argument falls flat against such rhetoric. Besides, calling for investigations alone will not deal a body-blow to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s popularity. Surveys such as the ‘Mood of the Nation’ should reflect the drop.
The misuse of LIC and SBI money hasn’t so far led to street vetoes. Where’s the blood on the road? And where’s the anger that boils over when an industrial conglomerate is allowed to grab hold of almost all of India’s airports and seaports? Nobody appears bothered.
The allegations need to be investigated. If Hindenburg Research can get to the bottom, so should homegrown research bodies, right? If the purpose is to create a hype, then keep the hype high. The perception battle has to be won. And there’s only limited time. The next 10 months is crucial. They’re ‘G-20 months’ and the Modi regime will be vulnerable. The Opposition has less than a year to turn ‘Modi-Adani’ into Modi’s Waterloo!
India is being wooed by the ‘Who’s Who’ of the world because India has the potential to become a financial superpower, signs of which have already been acknowledged. Any hits against this perception will be laid at the Modi government’s door and that when the entire G20 will be at India’s door. Nothing will, however, happen if Modi and his government keep railroading the Opposition’s calls for an investigation. India’s financial stability and security must be at the centre of the demand for an impartial probe into -Adanigate.
What are India’s regulatory mechanisms doing? What are India’s opposition parties doing other than sloganeering in Parliament? These parties, do they realize they have been given, right when they need it most, an election issue which has besmirched the Prime Minister’s “good name” and all that’s needed is to keep the perception to sink in deeper and deeper?
Instead, the opposition parties do not seem to be alive to the possibilities that an issue like Modi-Adani has given to them. Statements such as “it is an opportunity for the country to strengthen its regulatory mechanisms to prevent future market failures” aren’t going to do zilch. Forget the “regularity mechanisms” for the time being, this is opportunity calling to finish off the Modi regime, once and for all!
All of us have heard of the killer instinct and how we Indians never had the killer instinct which has been the single big reason why Indians always managed to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Right now, this applies to the array of opposition parties lined up against Modi-Adani. The Opposition sorely needs the killer instinct to finish off Modi-raj. (IPA Service)