Politicalbaaba (PB) twisty take on 5 important news items of the day.
1. Pathankot Terror Attack: Oh not again, Modi-Sharif bonhomie at test
Giving a stiff challenge to Modi’s birthday diplomacy, half a dozen terrorists stormed Pathankot air base with an intention to harm strategic assets. They were neutralized but we lost a few brave soldiers.
Opposition, especially Congress, has got a reason to slander Modi and what they call govt. flip flop policy on Pakistan. We will give a befitting reply Home Minister Rajnath thundered.
I wonder what befitting reply means. We will kill terrorists who have entered our soil and not let them succeed or we will go after their masterminds in Pakistan. For India it seems to be the former. Killing people who have come to get killed is no big achievement. Thwarting their nefarious designs is.
As usual we are claiming that these terrorists came from Pakistan and their handlers were backed by ISI. We will give all this evidence to Pakistan but it will meet the same fate as previous incidents. Nothing will happen. Pakistan will feign ignorance.
So what has changed? Nothing. Greeting Sharif on his birthday, Modi’s statesman like approach of visiting Pakistan, all doesn’t seem to be working. Sharif is not in control of the country, and however good intentions he may have, he has his limitations. Unless Pakistan army and ISI give up their anti-India stance, peace with neighbour Pakistan is a distant dream….
2. BJP to contest UP Assembly elections on its own and form govt. – Difficult without naming a CM candidate and / or alliance with BSP
UP elections are due in 2017, but after loss in Bihar, BJP can’t afford a loss here. BJP bagged 71 / 80 seats in LS polls held in 2014. State elections are fought on different issues and BJP seems to have lost some of the leads.
Why UP could be challenging for BJP?
- In all states where elections have taken place (except Maharashtra) it has not been able to maintain its LS vote share (loss of 10%-30% vote share in assembly polls).
- It doesn’t have a CM face to match the might of Akhilesh & Mayawati.
- Deteriorating law and order has provided a hope to Mayawati and she may bounce back.
- Congress emboldened by its Bihar formula and victory may try to form an alliance with BSP.
- Caste rules the roost in UP and Hindu consolidation which happened in LS may not happen in state polls.
BJP seems to have not learnt its lessons from Bihar and has said it won’t announce a CM candidate. Please refer to my column on DailyO on this topic.
3. Veteran communist leader A.B. Bardhan is no more – The voice of the poor, simple ideologist
My condolences to the family and may his soul rest in peace. A short profile of Bardhan on my Blog.
4. Rahul to take over as Congress President – More trouble ahead for the grand old party?
Rahul is expected to become Congress President as mother Sonia has not been keeping well. The ceremony of announcing the new king in the oldest party of the biggest democracy of the world is slated to happen after yuvraj returns from his vacation in Europe.
The Congress clearly is facing its biggest crisis ever as I detailed in my column in Niticentral and even a section of Congress doesn’t feel enthused about Rahul taking over. His ascent at least will end speculation that he is not serious about the job.
A section of party wants Sonia to announce Priyanka as her successor. She definitely has the talent but the mother Sonia wants to pass the throne to his son and not daughter. Typical Indian mentality she has acquired.
All the best to Rahul for his promotion. Doubtful he can change the fortunes. But blunders from BJP, gloomy economic situation in the world support of regional parties and a bit of luck may bring the party to the forefront again (as in 2004). After all its the main opposition to BJP.
5. Under pressure from beta Akhilesh, papa Mulayam revokes sacking of two Akhilesh aides – Better sense prevails but soap opera continues
Mulayam revoked the suspension of two youth leaders (Sunil Singh Sajan and Anand Bhadauria) and close aides of Akhilesh for anti-party activities. Though beta is CM, it is widely known that papa and his brothers run the show in UP. Mulayam has also in the past openly criticized Akhilesh govt.
Akhilesh was kept in dark about the two suspensions and he boycotted the inauguration of the much hyped family affair – the annual Saifai Mahotsav – to mark his protest.
Another power struggle in this influential family, this time between Akhilesh and his uncle Shivpal. Shivpal nurses CM ambitions and was reportedly hurt when Mulayam chose beta over bhai in 2012. Since then he has been trying to make a comeback. Diminishing influence of Ramgopal Yadav (another brother of Mulayam) in the party has brought Shivpal back to the forefront.
Shivpal is also trying hard to get back Amar Singh in the party. It is to be noted that Akhilesh and Ramgopal opposition had led to Amar Singh’s removal from the party. The soap opera continues. Its all for power and money in the end….