oppn parties Rajya Sabha: BJP Outfoxes The Congress - And The Opposition

News Snippets

  • Corona cases in India cross 4000 and the death toll stands at 124
  • The government decides to double the testing of corona suspects from 10000 now to 20000 in the next three days
  • Flipkart assures employees that there will be no job or salary cuts due to the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Although it was obvious, but the government still clarifies that there is no need to switch off appliances and only lights need to be switched off on April 5 at 9pm after confusion in the minds of some people
  • PM Modi and President Trump decide "to deploy full strength of (Indo-US) partnership" to fight against COVID-19
  • 17 states have reported 1023 cases of coronavirus linked to the Tablighi Jamaat, which translates to 30% of all positive cases in India
  • The government says people should not use alcohol-based hand sanitizers before lighting diyas or candles on April 5
  • The railways say there is no certainty yet when services will resume after the lockdown and a final decision will be taken in the next few days
  • As coronavirus cases multiply in Assam, six north-east states seal their borders with the state
  • Power System Operation Corporation Ltd. (POCOSO) putting all systems and protocols in place at war-footing to ensure there is no grid failure due to reduction in demand on April 5 at 9 pm
  • Power ministry scotches rumours that the power grid might fail due to the 9-minute blackout called by PM Modi on Sunday, April 5
  • Centre asks people to wear home-made masks if it is absolutely essential for them to step out of homes
  • Centre asks states to allow licensed street vendors to sell essential items
  • 8000 samples were tested across India on April 2, but the government said that testing will be need-based and will not be used as a confidence-boosting measure
  • Air India operating special flights to fly passengers stuck in India since the lockdown
India shows solidarity in the fight against COVID-19 by lighting diyas and candles at 9 pm yesterday as requested by Prime Minister Modi
oppn parties
Rajya Sabha: BJP Outfoxes The Congress - And The Opposition

By Sunil Garodia
First publised on 2018-08-09 23:08:27

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator. Writes for a number of publications.
The way the NDA government managed to get its nominee Harivansh elected to the deputy chairman’s post in the Lok Sabha once again shows that when push comes to shove, the skills and speed of crisis managers in the BJP are much better and despite growing bonhomie, the opposition is still in disarray. Rahul Gandhi made a series of mistakes in this episode and it was surprising because he has shown a proactive demeanor of late and has been able to discomfort the ruling dispensation on more than one occasion in the recent past.

The first, and the biggest mistake, was to nominate its own man for the post. Given the fact that the BJP had fielded an MP of ally JD(U), the Congress should have been tactical and magnanimous enough to consult other opposition parties and field a consensus candidate. That would have rallied the entire opposition around him or her. The BJP, on its part, made a brilliant tactical move which blunted the criticism that it was ignoring allies. With this one move, it has ensured that the JD(U) remains in the fold(especially after a series of reports that indicated that Nitish might be in talks with the Congress and other opposition leaders to do what he is best at – jumping the ship) and that other disgruntled allies like the Shiv Sena, the Akalis and Ram Vilas Paswan are given hope of better treatment. The immediate result of this move was that the Shiv Sena and the Akalis voted for Harivansh instead of abstaining.

Then, after nominating a Congress candidate, the second big mistake Rahul Gandhi made was not to reach out to several opposition leaders like Arvind Kejriwal, Naveen Patnaik and Jagan Reddy to ensure that their MPs voted for him. AAP was so miffed that Rahul didn’t call that they tweeted about it, quipping that politics cannot be run on egos and abstained, while Jagan Reddy’s YSR Congress also abstained, calling it a contest between “the devil and the deep sea.” Naveen Patnaik was won over by the BJP as Modi himself called him to ask for support.

At this rate, the opposition will not be able to get the requisite numbers before the 2019 elections. Already, KCR of TRS and Naveen Patnaik have been won over by the BJP. There is a chance that despite calling the BJP the devil, YSR Congress will also lean towards it now that Chandrababu Naidu has made an exit from the NDA. The BJP has managed to assuage the feelings of its disgruntled allies and has won over two new possible allies. The Congress on the other hand, by being selfish and not being proactive, has allowed opposition ranks to be breached. This doesn’t augur well for opposition unity ahead of the general elections.