‘If you can’t get rid of the skeleton in your closet, you’d best teach it to dance,’ said George Bernand Shaw many years ago. The Congress is embroiled in scams and the focus is off it now. But after receiving a lot of flak and wild accusations, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his team has embarked on the introduction of reforms. The main opposition BJP whose, claim to fame over the years, has been a party with a difference, is no paragon of virtue. They have been playing obstructive politics.
The opposition led by BJP is constantly talking about early polls, making pronouncements that the UPA II will not last its full term till 2014. They are talking as if they will win and form the next government. But actually what is the alternative; again a fractured verdict with the two main parties, Congress and BJP getting bulk of the seats and the others like SP, Mayawati, Trinamool Congress, DMK, AIDMK, CPI, CPM, BJD, Ajit Singh, etc garnering some seats; and all trying to be king-makers and aligning with either Congress or BJP.
While the Congress, if it wins may not have a problem of throwing up a name for PM and getting the allies to back them. But with BJP winning, there will be a mad rush for the post of PM. The BJP has 3-4 aspirants and the NDA many more serious and not so serious aspirants. The power struggle would then turn into politics of appeasement and balancing the negative forces of the allies. Ultimately governance and reforms will take a back seat.
LK Advani is still hopeful of fulfilling his dream of being the PM as he feels he is the natural successor and automatic choice after the retirement of Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Narendra Modi already feels he is the only qualified candidate in BJP for PM, though many in his own party would like to see him stick to Gujarat. Just as Mamta sees red in everything, Modi sees Sonia’s hand everywhere. Possibly this is the way of remaining in the limelight and a strong BJP’s PM aspirant. Other the other side ex-Karnataka CM BS Yeddyurappa has praised Sonia Gandhi for fulfilling promises made to party members. At the press conference, he added, ‘She (Sonia) can be trusted more than Nitin Gadkari when it comes to keeping promises.’
While the Congress might be able to push in economic reforms, the BJP and NDA will be working towards populist policies to appease and retain support of the allies at the cost of the nation. No foreign investor would like to come and invest in this environment. Development in India will slow down.
The general perception across the educated and young masses is, if the nation has to progress with hard decisions for long term benefits, reforms and economic policies, Congress and UPA is a better bet than BJP and NDA. The foreign investor too my like it to happen. But does the aam admi think so?