oppn parties Janata Parivar Unity: Acche Din are not Coming

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  • University vice-chancellors in West Bengal decide not to hold final-year examinations despite UGC prod, will instead go by the state government advised 80-20 formula where 80% will be marked on performance in past semesters and 20% on internal assessments in the final semester
  • The Centre wants the ITI and other top Indian firms to bid for 5G as Chinese firms Huawei and ZTE are not likely to be allowed to participate
  • India and China agree on total disengagement to return to peace ahead of the next round of military talks
  • The Supreme Court allows delivery of summons and notices via WhatsApp and email, but questions remain on proof of actual receipt
  • National Investigation Agency says the proceeds from the Kerala gold smuggling case could have been used for terrorist activities
  • Four Maoists shot dead in Valmiki Tiger Reserve in Bihar
  • Despite localized lockdown, Covid cases continue to rise at an alarming rate in West Bengal. Newer areas brought under containment zones in Kolkata
  • ICSE, ISC results declared, Average scores in the English paper, 20% lower this year than the average in most years, pulls down the aggregate for most candidates
  • IIP contracts by 35% in May. Manufacturing goes down by 39.3%
  • Row erupts over CBSE's decision to reduce the syllabus by 30% this academic year due to the disruption caused by the pandemic. Experts say several lessons that the ruling dispensation does not like are being removed
  • Gangster Vikas Dubey's nephew killed in an encounter by UP police who also pick up his key aide Raju Khullar and his son Adarsh
  • MHA sets up an inter-ministerial committee to probe the alleged financial misdeeds of three trusts linked to the Gandhi family
  • Actor Jagdeep, most famous for his Soorma Bhopali act in Sholay, passes away
  • Pakistan says Kulbhushan Jadhav has declined to file a review petition and will stick to his mercy plea. India calls it a farce
  • India to keep a strict vigil to confirm that the Chinese are abiding by the deal on the pullback at the LAC
Gangster Vikas Dubey's 'encounter' raises several questions and the Yogi government is under fire for allegedly getting him killed in a 'staged' encounter to prevent the exposure of the nexus between criminals and the administration in the state
oppn parties
Janata Parivar Unity: Acche Din are not Coming

By Sunil Garodia
First publised on 2015-09-23 18:00:07

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator. Writes for a number of publications.
What happens when chest thumping satraps of this or that caste or community, with king sized egos, try to come together in order to consolidate their vote banks and fight a perceived common political enemy? Their respective egos, buttressed by their chamchas, advise them to lead the united front and they do not yield the ground to others. Hence, the front either does not happen or if it does, breaks down in a few months.

The current fiasco over the much hyped unity in the so-called Janata parivar (comprising of the splinter groups of one man shows that emerged after the break down of the Janata Party) followed the same trend. Laloo Prasad, Nitish Kumar and Mulayam Singh Yadav thought they had everything sewed up and they were very excited at fighting the BJP unitedly in Bihar, with it being a trial for bigger things in UP and then the whole of India. But mutual distrust among these leaders is greater than their fear of losing the elections.

The reasons for this distrust are many. First of all, all of them claim to represent the same constituency of voters â€" the backward classes, the so-called other backward classes (OBC’s) and the minorities. In the backward classes, they have managed to break down equations so fine that each leader claims the support of one or the other class. In theory, if they unite they should be assured of all such votes. But in practice, none of the leaders is willing to let go of his hold over the caste he represents. Secondly, most of these leaders have a deep distrust for each other on account of real or perceived back stabbing in the past and fear of repetitions of the same in the future. Instead of unitedly fighting the ‘devil’, their egos are pushing them individually towards the deep sea.

The present unity effort has fallen flat mainly because Lalu Prasad had asked Nitish Kumar not to include two persons â€" Lalan Singh and P K Shahi â€" in his cabinet as they were perceived by Lalu to be the ones who sent him to jail. But Nitish did not heed Lalu’s request. Now Lalu thinks that Nitish will indulge in more such ‘betrayals’ if they fight elections under a common party. Lalu is also apprehensive that Nitish and his party will corner most of the prized portfolios if the new set up wins the polls. Further, he does not like the emergence of Nitish Kumar as the champion of the downtrodden and the minorities. He feels that the new set up will not give him the eminence his supposed stature demands. Hence, he has forgotten all about the BJP and is now concentrating all his fire on Nitish, including making overtures to Jiten Majhi, Nitish Kumar’s bête noire.

As it is the strong caste based overtones in Bihar have meant that all parties are doing things they will not normally do. The BJP has started wooing the OBC’s and the Mahadalits to retain their support, as they had voted for it en masse to give it a spectacular 31 seats out of 40 in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections in the state. Nitish is bending backwards to win upper caste support, as their 15% votes can tilt the scales in many constituencies. In such a scenario, a united Janata parivar would have given the BJP a run for its money. But for that to happen, each leader will have to take a haircut. That does not seem likely now.