By Sunil Garodia
The BJP-JJP alliance in Haryana is opportunistic at one level and morally wrong at another. It is opportunistic because Dushyant Chautala and the JJP had run the election campaign on an anti-BJP platform. If they now join hands with the 'enemy' to form the government, it is not a marriage of similar ideas but a hunger for power. The BJP, on the other hand, had lost the people's mandate but has clutched on the JJP straw to hang on to power for the next five years if all goes well between the two.
It is morally wrong because the JJP had used the Jats and their anger against the BJP for various reasons to win the support of the community. If he now supports the BJP, it is like stabbing the community in the back. But Chautala can say that he has joined the government to ensure that the Jats are not given short shrift. The BJP, on the other hand, is guilty of aligning itself with a caste-based outfit.
But with state elections becoming tricky and with small regional players often punching harder and much above their size, such alliances will become the norm hereafter. No one had given the JJP any chances. It was just one year old. The Congress was confident that the anti-BJP sentiment in the Jat community would translate into votes for it. It was also felt that with Dushyant's father Ajay and grandfather Om Prakash in jail for corruption, there would not be any support for a tainted party. But obviously, the people think that the sins of the father cannot be pinned on the son.
If the JJP can manage to sustain the alliance, it can be a win-win situation for both partners. The Jats will get their due and the government might actually do all it can to reduce the farm distress. But if the Jats are assuaged and they return to the BJP fold, will it not diminish Chautalaâs clout? Hence, it is in his interest to keep the Jat anger directed towards the BJP. That is going to keep the alliance on tenterhooks.