In Last 67 years of Independent India there has never been such a huge wedge between large parts of Indian Voters in Indian political and social arena. The country is clearly divided in two camps, the Modi Mania and other Modi Phobia. There is such a huge unprecedented gorge between the two set of voters and they have extreme reactions towards this gentleman called “Narendra Modi”
I would not get into the debate whether Narendra Modi is good or bad leader nor about his political affiliations or his ideology. Let’s look at him from another perspective, Doesn’t Indian Democracy which is abode to infinite number of caste, languages and creeds need a leader that’s inclusive of all sections of the society?
Let’s also not get into the allegations of corruption and counter allegations of corruptions leveled against the Indian government or the Bjp run states by the ruling party and the opposition. The ruling Congress party of course has been all inclusive and has also prides itself with a Sikh Prime Minister for last 2 terms and the principal opposition Bhartiya Janta Party when it was in power had a charismatic leader in Atal Bihari Vajpayee who in spite of the fact that the party came to power with a controversial Ram Jam Bhoomi movement has always been regarded as a Secular leader. Even his worst detractors have never dared to accuse Mr.A.B.Vajpayee of being communal.
As far as Narendra Modi is concerned let’s also leave all the allegations of his complicity in 2002 Gujarat Riots aside but what has Modi done to undo the damage done in 2002 to his image? He has not apologized for the riot deaths and in fact added insult to injury by using metaphors like puppy. He has also been generous to use words like Miyan to describe the Muslims that are on his wrong side. Let’s be frank here we all know the insinuations of being called a “Miyan” in Gujarat or a “Bhaiya” in Mumbai means.
Even among the Bjp party there is clearly a section which is not too happy with the elevation of Modi as the Prime Ministerial candidate or his style of functioning apart from the countless intellectuals like Amartya Sena and more recently Amitav Ghosh that have come out openly against Modi being the Prime Minister of the country and not to forget the fact that he is still denied Visa by the US Government.
It’s for India to decide about it in Ballot box whether Congress or Bjp comes to power in Elections of 2014 but the question will remain whether India needs a Leader like Man Mohan Singh or Atal Bihari Vajpayee or a leader like Narendra Modi who has clearly been a divisive force in the politics and Indian society.
How Modi is going to fare in the arena of National Politics in India is yet to be tested but as citizens who have seen our country emerge from the horrors of Partition to the bitter trauma of Babri Masjid Demolition Riots and Bomb Blasts. We can only hope that the myth of Modi which has been taken to the level of Apotheosis by some of his followers ends up being an Ephemera and India continues to remain the India that we have always known as a country of brotherhood and peace of various religions and Cultures.
By Sameer Khan
Image Source: See page for author [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons