oppn parties Kiran Bedi's Joining BJP Can Backfire

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  • In reply to a question in Parliament, the government says it is empowered to lawfully intercept, monitor or decrpyt information stored in a computer resource in the interest of sovereignty or integrity of India
  • Police stop a 12-year old girl on her way to the Sabarimala shrine
  • In Karnataka, the JD(S) indicates that it might support the BJP government if it falls short of numbers after the bypolls
  • Congress pips the BJP in local body elections in Rajasthan, winning 961 wards to the BJPs 737
  • After Airtel and Vodafone-Idea, Jio also indicates that tariffs will be raised from December
  • Sources in Shiv Sena say that they might revive the alliance with the BJP if it offers the 50:50 deal
  • A miffed Sanjay Rout of the Shiv Sena says that it will take "100 births" to understand Sharad Pawar
  • Mobile operators Vodafone-Idea and Airtel decide to raise tariffs from next month
  • Sharad Pawar meets Sonia Gandhi and says more time needed for government formation in Maharashtra
  • Justice S A Bobde sworn in as the 47th Chief Justice of India
  • Supreme Court holds hotels liable for theft of vehicle from their parking area if parked by valet, says "owner's risk" clause is not a shield from such liability
  • Finance Minister says she is receiving feedback from many sectors that recovery is happening as there is lower stress
  • Sabarimala temple opens, but police bar the entry of women below 50 years
  • Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman says Air India and BPCL to be sold off by March
  • Media person Rajat Sharma resigns as DDCA president
Two Muslim litigants in Ayodhya refuse to accept the Supreme Court order, say review petition might be filed
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Kiran Bedi's Joining BJP Can Backfire

By Sunil Garodia

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator. Writes for a number of publications.
Kiran Bediâ€â"¢s high octane admission to the party might turn out to be a double edged sword for the BJP. While Bedi is expected to lead its campaign on the streets, there will be protest if she is made the partyâ€â"¢s candidate for the chief ministerâ€â"¢s chair. There are several claimants for that – chief being Harsh Vardhan, Vijay Goel and Satish Upadhyay. All of them are long-standing loyal soldiers of the party and might be miffed if an outsider like Kiran Bedi is made the chief minister. Also, by doing so, the BJP will be following in the footsteps of the Congress, which it so despises, by foisting a leader from the so called High Command. It remains to be seen how the party workers react to this development.

However, if this is just a strategy to rattle the AAP (Bedi was a trusted Kejriwal lieutenant in the Anna Hazare-led Lokpal movement, who parted ways with him only when he started AAP against the wishes of Anna), then it may or may not work. AAP is suitably rattled for now, with poet Kumar Vishwas calling her Jaichand (traitor) in a couplet penned by him. But in the long run, it is sure to try and put Bedi down for having joined the ‘establishment.â€â"¢ Of course Bedi can turn around and say that Kejriwal, Sisodia and Vishwas are all traitors too, having ditched Anna before her for a party of their own. But the very fact that she herself has found Narendra Modiâ€â"¢s leadership â€Å"inspirational” after 8 long months, and that too just before the Delhi elections, shows that she is opportunistic. That said, Bedi is a known and hugely respected face in Delhi. However she had discredited herself somewhat by indulging in some ugly play acting on stage at the Anna Hazare fast.

Projecting Kiran Bedi as the partyâ€â"¢s face in Delhi has its drawbacks. It immediately gives the impression that the party is wary of Arvind Kejriwal and AAP and is hence using a person who was connected with him in the past and has a squeaky clean image herself to neutralize his clean image. It also gives the impression that the party does not think much of its own people in Delhi. In the past too, the party has admitted turncoats from Congress and other parties. The BJP does not need to do this. It has loyal leaders who are capable of leading it in states as well as taking up responsibilities at the centre. If Bedi is made Delhi chief minister, I for one will not like it.