oppn parties Sworn Enemies in One State, Friends in Another

News Snippets

  • 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
oppn parties
Sworn Enemies in One State, Friends in Another

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.
No permanent allies or foes in politics
It is true that there are no permanent allies or foes in politics. The latest example was the Mahagathbandhan in Bihar last year where sworn enemies Lalu Prasad and Nitish Kumar joined hands to defeat the BJP. But the position of the Congress party is comical, to say the least. Having been routed in the 2014 general elections and having had its footprint erased from large parts of India, the party is clutching at every available straw to remain floating. But it will perhaps become the only party to have an electoral alliance with a political combine in one state and be sworn enemies with the same combine in another.

Enemies in Kerala, friends in Bengal?
Sonia Gandhi is reportedly having confabulations with her advisors about forging an alliance with the Left parties in the ensuing West Bengal elections to try and beat Mamata Banerjee’s Trinamool Congress. The unprincipled nature of this alliance can be gauged from the fact that the two are at each others’ throat in Kerala. The Left parties there have been baying for CM Oomen Chandy’s head for his involvement in the so-called solar scam. Chandy on his part is accusing the Left liquor lobby for going after him due to the prohibition imposed in the state. Kerala has always had two combines, one led by Left and the other by Congress, that fight for political supremacy. It was the same in West Bengal before state Congress leaders felt threatened by Mamata Banerjee’s rising popularity and made her leave the party. Now they wish to join hands with the Left in Bengal while fighting it in Kerala.

No option for Congress
The major problem for Congress in Bengal is that despite having some pockets of loyal influence, it can never hope to garner enough numbers to be a kingmaker, let alone rule the state. Even the vote share in these pockets is dwindling with every passing election. Crumbs of office are making foot soldiers leave the party and join TMC. If Congress does not have an alliance with the Left and if votes are divided, it will fail to get seats even in those pockets. Once that happens, Congress will be wiped out in Bengal too. Hence the party is thinking of going in for this unprincipled alliance with the Left parties.