United they can win

Alive - - Let­ters -

The re­sound­ing de­feat of the BJP can­di­dates in two by-elec­tions held in UP re­cently send a clear sig­nal that if the op­po­si­tion par­ties could get to­gether they could get the bet­ter of the saf­fron party that too with rel­a­tive ease. (The op­po­si­tion dilemma – Alive – July, 2018). In this case two par­ties that have al­ways been at log­ger­heads with each other, the Sa­ma­jwadi Party led by Akhilesh Ya­dav and the Bahu­jsan Samaj Party led by Mayawathi de­cided to sink their dif­fer­ences and con­test the by­polls and their can­di­dates romped home easy win­ners. The hurt for the BJP was all the more be­cause one of the seats, Go­rakh­pur had been va­cated by the pre­sent UP CM Yogi Adityanath and the other Phulpur had been a pocket bor­ough of the Dy CM Mau­rya Prasad Varma. With the 2019 elec­tions loom­ing large the op­po­si­tion have al­ready be­gun mak­ing their moves to come to­gether on a com­mon plat­form and form a ma­ha­gath­band­han to take on the BJP. The Congress be­ing the only pan India party in the op­po­si­tion could have been the au­to­matic choice to lead the front but the party is to­day a pale shadow of its once for­mi­da­ble self and has just 48 seats to show in the Lok Sabha. It has also been soundly thrashed by the BJP and other re­gional par­ties in the state as well. Gaug­ing the mood of the op­po­si­tion par­ties, the Congress Pres­i­dent Rahul Gandhi has an­nounced that the Congress would be ready to throw its weight be­hind any PM nom­i­nee put up by the op­po­si­tion as long as he or she has no links with the RSS. How­ever it has not been roses all the way as far as the ini­tia­tives taken to form a rain­bow al­liance is con­cerned. In Bi­har for ex­am­ple the ma­ha­gath­band­han formed by the JD(U), the RJD and the Congress trounced the BJP in the assembly elec­tions but came apart soon after with Ni­tish re­fus­ing to have any truck with the RJD led by Lalu Prasad Ya­dav who had been sen­tenced to a term in jail on cor­rup­tion charges. And to add in­sult to in­jury Ni­tish formed an al­liance with the BJP and man­aged to stay on as the CM. This led to a split in the JD (U) with the party Pres­i­dent Sharad Ya­dav head­ing a new fac­tion. The var­i­ous re­gional satraps like Ma­mata Ban­er­jee, Akhilesh Ya­dav, Mayawathi, Naveen Pa­tr­naik, Chan­drababu Naidu and K Chan­drasekhara Rao are all ex­tremely pow­er­ful in their own states but as far as their sta­tus as na­tional lead­ers is con­cerned they do not count for much. The two Com­mu­nist par­ties, the

CPM and the CPI have lost their rel­e­vance to­tally and hav­ing lost West Ben­gal and Tripura they are in power only in Ker­ala. So a Com­mu­nist leader emerg­ing as a con­sen­sus can­di­date for the PM’s post is out of ques­tion. As al­most all the op­po­si­tion par­ties have a sin­gle agenda and that is to send the BJP and the NDA pack­ing they should rally be­hind the Congress and mag­nan­i­mously an­nounce the can­di­da­ture of Rahul Gandhi as their PM nom­i­nee. Even though it is not clear whether op­po­si­tion unity could be­come a re­al­ity this ap­pears to be the post pos­si­ble sce­nario for them.

— C V Aravind

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.