BJP Is Red Faced Vis-A-Vis Chandigarh Mayor Fiasco: Party's Aggression To Capture Power At Any Cost May Prove Counterproductive In Future

BJP Is Red Faced Vis-A-Vis Chandigarh Mayor Fiasco: Party's Aggression To Capture Power At Any Cost May Prove Counterproductive In Future

Interestingly, the ruling party has got no dearth of arguments to prove its illegal actions as logical which happened during Congress regimes and the trend continues unabated in the NDA regime also.

KS TomarUpdated: Friday, February 23, 2024, 07:42 PM IST
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Not withstanding the peak popularity of Prime Minister Narender Modi and the opposition’s fragmented alliance (INDIA), the Supreme Court’s verdict in the Chandigarh mayor election has come as set back to BJP and created an embarrassing situation which has put a question mark over its twin policy of decimating rivals at any cost and import leaders from opposition parties mainly Congress to set an effective narrative for 2024 to win for 3rd time.

Analysts are unanimous over the contention that Supreme Court is acting as the Savior of democracy which was also witnessed during Mrs Indira Gandhi’s dictatorial regime and the Rajiv Gandhi government’s decision to bring an ordinance to nullify the SC decision in the Shah Bano case. SC had given an unprecedented verdict in 2023 in connection with powers of transfers and postings which were given to elected Delhi CM. But it was rendered defunct through an ordinance which was called as Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi, ordinance, 2023.

Interestingly, the ruling party has got no dearth of arguments to prove its illegal actions as logical which happened during Congress regimes and the trend continues unabated in the NDA regime also. But centre has not been left with the ordinance route hence BJP has declared to honor the verdict of SC in the Chandigarh mayor case. SC robbed the BJP of backdoor entry through defections to get the Mayor post as it has accepted the concrete proof of majority to declare AAP’s mayor as the winner. Apex court refused to give any chance for manipulations and defection to BJP which was ready with the majority as three councillors of AAP had switched their side.

My interaction with senior leaders in Delhi shows that BJP is not ready to accept that low rung leader and former councillor committed fraud at the behest of central or state leaders though no stone was left unturned when two arch rivals i.e. AAP and Congress joined hands to defeat BJP in Chandigarh. BJP leaders publicly admit that they fight every election to win which applies to an important post of Chandigarh Mayor. Congress and AAP leaders accuse BJP of hatching a conspiracy to strangulate the majority as it wants to grab power by hook or crook which is being witnessed in some states toppled through defections thereby showing disrespect to democratic norms.

Experts say that BJP will have to learn to accept defeat and work for victory which may not be difficult especially when opposition is in disarray in the country. 2nd, RSS has got its hard principles which may not approve such tactics but studied silence is beyond the imagination of any citizen in the country. 3rd, BJP leaders are not tired of arguing that if commodity is open for sale then customers cannot be held guilty but it certainly amounts to murder of democracy like the Chandigarh Mayor episode and SC used this connotation to press the point. 4th, BJP high command is known for its micro-level management and keeps track of even small municipality election hence it is difficult to presume that planning was not being supervised and executed from Delhi? 5th, former union law minister, Arun Jaitley had introduced the electoral bonds with the perception of injecting transparency in the election process but the SC declared the same as unconstitutional as the scheme was violative of the right to information. 6th, successive Congress regimes used governors as pawns to topple the elected governments which was blot on the face of democracy. But the NDA government is not lagging behind as governors are acting at the behest of the centre to indulge in unconstitutional acts and SC had to intervene in some cases to save the democratic norms. The Apex court has reprimanded some governors for undermining the authority of elected CMs and the situation is going from bad to worse.

BJP’S Game Plan To Import Leaders

In this related issue, Political observers say that BJP claims itself to be a party with “differences” but such image get beaten when tainted leaders from the opposition are ready to switch sides to save their skin and trend has acquired dangerous proportions. As per a think tank of BJP, it may be aimed at demoralizing the opposition and creating a narrative to win 2024 but it does not yell with the perception of people who gave Modi a chance in 2014 as the UPA government was perceived as one of the most corrupt dispensations in the country. Scholars and intellectuals quote recent cases of entry Ex CM, Ashok Chavan and earlier Ajit Pawar in BJP with fanfare. As per the record, Chavan and Pawar face allegations of corruption in several cases which may be pushed under the carpet after their joining the saffron party. An identical entry of tainted leaders in BJP in West Bengal and several other states has raised questions about the logistics of the party which has not been questioned by RSS so far. Suddenly the investigating agencies go into hibernation if corrupt leaders join BJP as their sins are pardoned.

Analysts opine that BJP is rewarding the defectors at the cost of dedicated workers and senior leaders which may prove counterproductive in times to come hence such practice should be stopped before it is too late?

(The writer is political analyst based in Shimla)

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