Signs of un­ease

The events be­fore the no-con­fi­dence de­bate and after it show how the BJP is con­cerned about the cracks ap­pear­ing in its al­liance in the run-up to the gen­eral elec­tion.


THERE is lit­tle doubt that the most en­dur­ing im­age of the 2018 mon­soon ses­sion of Par­lia­ment will be of Congress pres­i­dent Rahul Gandhi walk­ing across the aisle of the Lok Sabha and hug­ging Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi. The unique and un­prece­dented ges­ture had man­i­fold sig­nif­i­cance. To start with, it marked the fi­nale of, ar­guably, the most spir­ited at­tack by the prin­ci­pal op­po­si­tion party on the Bharatiya Janata Party (Bjp)-led­na­tional Demo­cratic Al­liance (NDA) govern­ment dur­ing its reign of four-plus years. The con­duct of the govern­ment was ar­raigned by Rahul Gandhi on a num­ber of counts, in­clud­ing cor­rup­tion in a de­fence deal. He as­serted that the Prime Min­is­ter was not able to look him in the eye on ac­count of his in­volve­ment in ques­tion­able af­fairs. He also came up with the warn­ing that the hood­wink­ing (“jumla”) tac­tics of the govern­ment could not fool peo­ple for long.

Equally im­por­tantly, the act of the hug and the procla­ma­tions that ac­com­pa­nied it were es­sen­tially a re­it­er­a­tion of the Gand­hian ethos, which is one of the pri­mary guid­ing prin­ci­ples of the Congress party. In as­sert­ing that he would al­ways re­spond to the ex­pres­sions of ha­tred and lam­poon­ery against him with love and re­gard and in fol­low­ing it up

PRIME MIN­IS­TER NAREN­DRA MODI ges­tures as Congress pres­i­dent Rahul Gandhi walks away after hug­ging him in the Lok Sabha dur­ing the de­bate on the no-con­fi­dence mo­tion in Par­lia­ment on July 20.

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