oppn parties Shame: BJP's 80-hour Misadventure In Maharashtra Comes To An End, Fadnavis Resigns

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  • China bans access to Indian news websites
  • PM Modi says that as Unlock-02 kicks in and more people resume working, people have to follow the rules even more religiously
  • PM Modi says that all citizens need to be vigilant against people who do not follow the rules in force, like wearing masks and maintaining social distancing
  • PM Modi warns the country that with the onset of the monsoon, more seasonal diseases will strike and citizens have to be more disciplined
  • Hero Cycles to buy the struggling Atlas Cycle group
  • RIL to buy the retail businesses of Future Group
  • Import licensing to be put in place for AC's TV's and other non-essential items
  • Rafale to deliver the first batch of the fighter jets to India by the end of July
  • J&K separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani, the most visible face of the Hurriyat, broke all relations with the forum
  • Nearly 20000 new Covid cases reported in India on Sunday. 384 deaths reported
  • Even as the Centre checks Chinese shipments for viruses and malware, transport minister Nitin Gadkari says holding up consignments at ports will hit India more than China
  • Fuel retailers in J&K asked to stock up on LPG cylinders for two months due to fear over the closure of roads because of landslides and flooding in the monsoons. But it triggers wild speculations about war with China
  • Amazon to hire 20000 temporary staff in addition to the 50000 seasonal staff it hired recently
  • RBI board thinks of relaxing norms for NPAs. The 90-day recognition might be extended to 180 days due to widespread distress due to the lockdown
  • Google and Apple approach the government to include their API in Aarogya Setu app for contact tracing of Covid-19 infected persons
PM Modi announces extension of PM Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana, the free ration scheme for the poor, until November
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Shame: BJP's 80-hour Misadventure In Maharashtra Comes To An End, Fadnavis Resigns

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.

Learning from one's mistakes is the best way for one to move ahead in life. But it seems politicians in India, especially the current top leadership of the BJP, never learn from mistakes. It had allowed B S Yediyurappa to form the government in Karnataka last year despite not having the numbers. He had to resign before the floor test. A repeat has happened in Maharashtra. The BJP high command (effectively, it consists of just two people - Prime Minister Narendra Modi and party president Amit Shah) not only allowed Devendra Fadnavis to take oath as the chief minister of Maharashtra by banking on the support of Ajit Pawar of the NCP (hoping to cause a split in the NCP or defections from other parties by either using strong-arm tactics, lure of office or monetary compensation to get the numbers) but also indulged in some unprecedented constitutional moves to make it happen. Yet, all their efforts failed and when the Supreme Court ordered a floor test within 24 hours. Fadnavis has had to resign as Pawar failed to deliver.

This is a huge embarrassment for the BJP as well as both Modi and Shah. One fails to comprehend how seasoned politicians like them failed to judge the hold Sharad Pawar has over the NCP. How could they not fathom that Ajit Pawar had no standing of his own and he owed his position in the party to his uncle? Perhaps, they thought that if Pawar came on board and was made the deputy chief minister, others would join if they were offered ministerial berths. Or it thought some could be lured with monetary offers. But they failed to understand that if Sharad Pawar had managed to convince Sonia Gandhi to let the Congress join a government in which the Shiv Sena would play a leading role, all equations had changed and very few NCP MLAs would budge from the stand taken by Sharad Pawar. In any case, the BJP had just 105 MLAs. It hoped too much as it still needed 40 more to prove its majority. Hoping to lure 40 NCP MLAs from the total of 54 that the party had was hoping for the impossible considering they owed their loyalties to Sharad Pawar.

The skullduggery and cloak and dagger politics indulged in to swear in Fadnavis and Ajit Pawar has come to naught. It has only served to bring the offices of the Prime Minister, the Governor of Maharashtra and even the President of India into disrepute. While whatever action was taken for the swearing-in was technically and constitutionally correct, it was morally wrong and politically suicidal, as later events have shown. Although Article 361 provides immunity to the President and the Governor as they are not answerable to any court of law for the exercise of powers available to them or any action taken by them in the course of their duty, they are answerable to the people.

The BJP will also have to provide a lot of answers to the people of Maharashtra as well as the rest of the country. It will not suffice to say that they tried to fill the political vacuum in the state or were hoping to provide a stable government. It will also not suffice to say that since the Shiv Sena was trying to play around with the mandate by aligning with parties diametrically opposite to it, they tried to scuttle the efforts. The BJP should have allowed the three-party alliance to make a bid and assume power. It should have sat in the opposition. It should have explained to the people how the Shiv Sena showed disrespect to their mandate. It should have hoped to use that goodwill to win alone in 2024. Yet, it squandered all for a misadventure and has lost all respect from right-thinking people.