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Disruption

 

Rahul, don't lose credibility so fast!


 

RAWpapaya
by Satya Pal Singh-fnbworld

 

 

Sonia advising son Rahul

The advent of Narendra Modi as Prime Minister 19 months ago on the strength of an unprecedented mandate, brought in its wake also thousands of his enemies, who were not for a moment, reconciled to the historic change that came in his name, snatching power from a corrupt behemoth called Congress. If India's Parliament has gone wholly dysfunctional today and is not able to transact any legislative business to a whopping loss to the nation, blame goes entirely to the Congress that has willy nilly drawn a few regional parties into the vortex of , what some call its ‘anti-people activity’, all for its entrenched political reasons.

 

Earlier, disruption was forced when the court found Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and Rahul enmeshed in the Rs 2,000 crore National Herald scam. Finding the High Court order to appear in the trial court too insulting, they took the court battle to Parliament to pressurize a govt that apparently had no role in court observations that came traumatizing the Gandhis. At least 13 important Bills, among them two on GST and land reforms, that have direct bearing on the nation's economy and development, are endlessly waiting to be cleared by Parliament. But no Opposition leader seems to care. And those who are a little concerned, have no substantial say to shift gears in this noxious political game.

 

Congress protestors-fnbworld

 

On Monday, for instance, amid uproarious scenes created by the Opposition, the Deputy Chairman had to adjourn the Rajya Sabha in extreme angush. Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj had hard time making her statement on her Pakistan visit in the House as Opposition leaders descended into the well, shouting slogans. Nothing was audible. The Congress, along with a few other Opposition leaders, were protesting against three incidents. One was the demolition of 500 shanties in Delhi on railway land, for which notices for vacation/demolition had been issued at least three times, but the unauthorized occupants chose to ignore the warning each time. When on March 14, shanty-dwellers were served with notice, they approched CM Arvind kejriwal on the prospect of a looming severe action, he is said to have assured them that "no one could displace them and there should be no cause for worry. And if they demolish your dwellings, we will give you everything--land, electricity and water."

 

Some shanty- dwellers thenselves revealed that Kejriwal had promised them, during poll campaign, "complete rehabilitation" if the Railways insisted on displacing them. It is also alleged that a girl-infant died during demolition, but her father himself says that the child died a little before 10 am, whereas the demolition started well after 12 pm. Visiting the site, Kejriwal chose to attack the Modi govt and demanded that murder case be instituted against all those responsible for the demolition. How could the CM talk of "murder" without ascertaining the cause of the child's death ? Is he talking murder to aggravate the issue in a situation that has turned extremely fluid, with Rahul Gandhi already jamming Parliament over what he described as "the murder of a labourer's child and cruel displacement of hutment dwellers." Autopsy cited the death due to injury, but how did the injury occur, no one knows.

 

One can, however, understand the pain of these homeless people, especially when the winters have set in, but is it in order to indefinitely occupy railway land and also play politics on it, ostensibly at the instance of political sharpshooters whose alacrity to capture burning issues remains too evident to browbeat and bring pressure on their political opponents. Is not it a clear instance of cheap politicking ? As for these shanty-dwellers, let the govt provide them shelters. It's not for the Railways to give their land to the people who are in illegal occupation of its prime land, probably earmarked for an upcoming important project. Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu has, however, promised to rehabilitate these homeless evictees, but will it be a healthy precedent ? Is it possible for the Railways to provide land to all shanty-dwellers who occupy its land all over India?

 

But yes, purely on humane ground, the Railway Division that took to demolition in the winter season needs to be slammed. Should the Congress leaders still press the issue further despite govt's clarification that all those responsible for this "atrocity" at a wrong time would be punished? If the Congress had any concern for Shakurbasti dwellers, why did it not raise the issue in Parliament earlier? Rahul tells the evictees, “Whenever a slum is to be razed, call Rahul Gandhi ; he won’t let this happen.” It also looks strange, however, that the Railway administration demolished the shanties without taking the Railway Minister into confidence. No one can defend this demolition in this December chill, even if it was carried out for urgent vacation of railway land!

 

In this context, it will not be out of place to mention here that during consecutive Congress regimes,countless improprieties were committed, beside the massive scams that have no parallel in IndependentIndia. What happened during Indira Gandhi's Emergency when Sanjay Gandhi assumed extra-Constitutional authority and "ordered" demolition of almost one-sixth of "unauthorized" Delhi, causing in the process numerous casualties in various colonies? When innumerable young people were "forcibly" sterilized, senior political leaders jailed and thousands subjected to inhuman indignities? Or in 1984, after Indira Gandhi's assassination, when thousands of Sikhs were burnt alive in their houses and in streets by unruly mobs after incitement from  senior Congress leaders?

 

Then comes the issue of an Akali leader, at whose farmhouse in Abohar limbs of two Dalits were allegedly chopped off.The town was marred with virtual shutdown after the incident. While one victim died on the way to the hospital, another was admitted in a serious condition in Amritsar. An FIR has been filed against 11 people, including Akali Dal leader Shivlal Doda, but no arrests have been made so far. Apparently, the offenders are absconding. It's a clear case of gruesome crime which needs to be dealt with as per the provisions of law. No one is defending the culprits and their barbaric action. Will anyone ask Rahul what Parliament, that he is disrupting, has to do with this act of crime? As for the deterioration of the law and order situation in Punjab, the Central leadership has already asked Chief Minister P S Badal to get tough with the rowdy elements of all hues.The BJP is understood to have conveyed to the CM that it would not continue with the govt if the father-son Badal duo act beyond the coalition brief.


The third issue, that is currently troubling the Gandhis over Modi's Kerala visit, is very interesting. It is alleged that Chief Minister Oommen Chandy has not been invited for an event where Modi will unveil a statue of former Kerala CM late R Sankar, a prominent Ezhava community leader, who once headed Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana Yogam (SNDP). The Congress raised the issue in Parliament and hit out at the BJP for "insulting the CM." The event is organized by SNDP which asked Chandy to not attend the event. Denying any BJP pressure on this, SNDP saw big fun in the charge, commenting : "This is being done just to derive "political mileage." Doesn't the allegation sound ironical after it was revealed in Parliament that Chandy had earlier regretted, in a letter, that he would not beavailable in the city during the event? 

 

At least one thing is clear: If the Congress continues to politicize every issue and disrupts Parliament, itwill lose whatever little credibility it has today. Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Rahul may not agree, but people look awfully fed up with their party. Let it not gloat over its marginal gains in Bihar on the back of the state's casteist politics neatly formalized by Nitish Kumar and Lalu Yadav. If this leadership does not retrace its steps and continues to play foul, it will soon be reduced to margins in Indian politics. Should the NDA under Narendra Modi lose the 2019 general election, regional parties will come to power in a preposterous, mumbo jumbo coalition, where the Congress will find itself precariously cut to the size of a nonentity. Is the Congress ready for such a scenario?






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