Wednesday, February 19, 2014


DIVIDE AND RULE POLICY OF CONGRESS


A legacy of the British reign that the Congress inherited was "divide and rule". As an alien nation, least interested in our country and its populace, we can understand the British policy. But as a national party of yore, that takes pride in freedom struggle, it is irony that for Congress leaders of modern era, continuing in power has become the prime motto.  For this they divide the polity and they divide the people. 

The decline of Congress started in 1967 with the rise of regional aspirations and birth of regional parties like DMK and Akali Dal etc., They slowly picked up pace and saw decimation of Congress in their respective states. The real shocker came when TDP, under the leadership of NTR, registered thumping win in AP in 1983. "Anna" as he is called, NTR initiated a major drive throughout the country against Congress by bringing all forces inimical to them on one platform. This gave rise to many combinations and the ultimate nemesis came in 1999 when NDA came to power in 1999 with the solid support of TDP.

The decline of Congress vote share share from an initial high of almost 50% post independence to its lowest of a little over 25% sent shock waves to the GOP. Come 2004, they resorted to the trick played by the Britishers on gullible Indians, "Divide the people and keep ourselves in power". We shall take a few examples, as narrating all will be a book load. 

Take, for example, the Assemble elections in AP in 2004. Even before elections it is said that the then leader of opposition tried to topple the state government led by TDP by encouraging a highly ambitious leader, who left the party to pursue personal ambition. He left TDP as he was not offered a Minister post. He was offered CM post in case he could muster support of sixty TDP MLAs. He is said to have sounded all MLAs on this but failed in his mission. So, he embarked on a divisive slogan "Divide AP". (sic) <This information was directly taken from the editorial in Andhra Jyothy on Sunday by RK>

With his mission having failed, under directions from his leader, Sonia, the local satrap of Congress, YSR, embarked on a divisive agenda all by himself. He struck a deal with the ambitious regional leader from one region and entered into a pre- poll arrangement in that region with a clear promise of dividing the state, once elected. What happened was history. Despite promise by their Supremo Sonia that a separate state would be carved out, the promise remained on paper. 

Five years on, the regional aspirations of  region belied by false promises and a strong incumbency wave sweeping the state, plan B was set afoot. Once bitten twice shy, people of one region would not have believed the same promise again. So, the regional leader was dumped and a caste leader turned film actor was pampered by the Congress to keep themselves in power. This actor-turned politician-turned turn coat floated a party, promised Heaven to youth and divided anti -incumbency vote of the ruling party to the disadvantage of a spirited opposition. All through there was an unwritten understanding by the self-serving mega actor and Congress that the former would merge his party in the GOP. So, he bartered his self respect for a State Minister post, dumped his cadres and jumped into the dirty pond. Rest is history.

Very recently, the same act was repeated in Delhi. Stung by a double incumbency, strong middle class apathy,  rising inflation and deep rooted corruption charges, Congress dropped its ammunition even before the electoral war started. By covertly helping the other contender (new, but ambitious like our actor) AAP was helped in the hustings. This threw up a hung assembly and by offering outside support to the fledgling party, Congress entered power corridors through back door. The resultant sufferer is the state and voters. The inexperienced but highly ambitious CM of the State of Delhi started suffocating in the "bear hug" of Congress and governance took a back seat. Efforts of Congress to pamper the same ambitious leader at national level failed as the inexperience of the leader came in his way of larger ambitions and the party is slowly petering away into oblivion. 

It is time voters realize the larger game of Congress and vote the party out. Not only voters should vote the party out but there is also responsibility to see that their vote share is reduced below 10%. Let the country move forward in federal spirit with strong national leader (not from Congress) at the centre and strong and self-less regional leaders. Let us grow collectively with "Unity in Diversity".

                                                      VOTE OUT CONGRESS


JAI HIND                                                                                                 JAI JANMABHOOMI

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BLACK DAY IN INDIAN DEMOCRACY



The Telangana Bill was passed by the Lok Sabha in the midst of an unprecedented "din" in the house. For those waiting for the "dust" of T-storm to settle down after forty four years, there may be a surprise. The brazen and thoughtless manner in which the bill was prepared and  passed is sure to raise more dust. It may not settle soon. It will pass muster in Rajya Sabha and the President will sign. It is simple logic. What next?

The bill was passed under Article 3 of the Constitution.  The article states that

Parliament may by law

(a) form a new State by separation of territory from any State or by uniting two or more States or parts of States or by uniting any territory to a part of any State;

It, inter alia, states that "the Bill has been referred by the President to the Legislature of that State for expressing its views thereon within such period as may be specified in the reference...". It makes clear that President seeks only the opinion and not consent of the State Legislature. This gives unmitigated powers to the Central Government to tamper with borders of any state without even taking into account the views of the people there. Did the Constitution makers envisage such a situation as happened on the 18th February, 2014 in the Lok Sabha, where a state's re-organization bill was passed amid pandemonium, without taking into account views of the state legislature, suspending the whole lot of members of one region and blacking out the TV channel in order to see that the region affected did not see the ruckus? The answer is a firm "No". Dr. B.R.Ambedkar, Chief Architect of the Constitution said thus.

"But before condemning the Constitution for containing such overriding powers, certain considerations must be borne in mind. The first is that these overriding powers do not form the normal feature of the Constitution. Their use and operation are expressly confined to emergencies only”. (From JP's Blog)

He envisaged a situation where a dictatorial and self-serving leader takes advantage of this constitutional provision and abuses it. Hence, he said "Emergencies only". What is the emergency in 2014. It is the l debacle lurking on the face of Congress and its allies. Let us go back to the history of Telangana Movement.“The truth behind the “purportedly” sixty years of struggle for formation of Telangana State is at the best “a sweet lie” or “a sour truth”.” Though a few hardcore Telangana protagonists might feel aggravated, this is a fact of history as enunciated below. Most of the time, the struggle was confined to political maneuvering. They never made the ordinary man a partner in the struggle. He was used as an orange, peeled, the cover thrown out and politicians enjoyed the juice. The sequence of events since 1956 proves this point.

The state was ruled by CMS hailing from Congress from Rayalaseema for 5666 days, from TDP from Rayalaseema including NTR (who contested from Hidupur) for 5361 days. (Total 11027 days). CM s, all of whom are from Congress from Telangana ruled 3845 days and CM s from Coastal AP ruled 4098 days.  It is clear that the Congress CMs hailing from Telangana who ruled for considerable time never made any attempt to carve out Telangana, though the party was in power both in state and centre.

The 1st SRC recommended Telangana be kept as Hyderabad State and that after 1961 elections it could be merged if 2/3rd majority in Assembly favored it. What acted on the mind of the Government of the day is mired in mystery, but the recommendation was not considered and an integrated AP was formed with a Gentlemen agreement. In fact, Nehru in all wisdom expressed the view that it was a matrimonial agreement with a divorce clause if the parties cant live together. Even if the entire state speaks Telugu there is a lot of diversity between regions in culture and development. That settles the issue to a major extent. In 1969, at the end of the gentlemen agreement period, politicians in Telangana thought the provisions were not implemented in right spirit and what happened was a bloody agitation. In a book written by T.N.Kaul,ex- secretary of External Affairs and published in 1982 he mentioned that Indira Gandhi, in principle accepted formation of Telangana but was dissuaded  as the issue of Hyderabad was still in the UN and could not be taken up for consideration. In 1979 the Hyderabad case was closed by the UN. They could then have kept Hyderabad as a Union territory and divided the state. That did not happen as the demon of naxalism was purportedly hanging its sword there, more in Telangana. Agitating leaders of Congress were offered plum posts and the agitation was suppressed. Who did it? The Congress. 

In 1972 a “Jai Andhra Movement” was started in Coastal Andhra area against the upholding of the Mulki rules in Hyderabad area by SC. Surprisingly, Telangana leaders who spearheaded the separatist agitation in 1969 were silent on separation at that time, since they were enjoying power. Again leaders who led the agitation were again accommodated in plum posts. So, it is clear that the struggle for Telangana was confined to political leaders only and people of the region were exploited by only one party, the Congress, to gain political mileage. This also proves the agitation was not raging for sixty years continuously but spanned and panned out in two years only, in 1969 and 1973. During both the agitations hundreds lost their lives. It is a fact that no politician either from Telangana or Coastal Andhra raised the issue even mildly from then onward.

Moreover, during the 1969 agitation the properties belonging to NTR and Dr. C. Narayan Reddy were attacked by the agitators in view of a song in a Telugu film produced by the former and written by the latter. If the Telangana agitation was so seriously being waged continuously by people on ground, the groundswell of anger on NTR would never have died down. But TDP formed in 1983 received overwhelming support from Telangana so much so that even today the party boasts about cadre strength in Telangana and Rayalaseema. It is with open hands people of Telangana received NTR and continued supporting TDP. From this it is clear that people of Telangana were never involved in the clamour for a separate state after 1973 and even politicians never bothered about the issue till KCR came on the scene.

And why did KCR, who remained silent all the years he was in TDP and never spoke about Telangana pride or injustice meted out to the region suddenly realize that all was going wrong by living together, with their own cousins? All of it was because he was not offered a ministerial berth!  And did he take the agitation to its logical conclusion even when there were umpteen chances opened up to him during the past decade when he could have called the shots and got Telangana of his dreams? It is lure of power and be the boss of the region that tangled him.  

Now, that Congress is facing rout (even now it is inevitable) they struck a deal with KCR. The details of the secret deal will come out soon. The main aim of congress is to see that T-Bill was presented and if BJP agreed to pass it, to take credit and if BJP opposed, to throw blame on them. In view of the very strong winds blowing in its favour the BJP took a pragmatic decision of sailing with the wind. 

A lot of frustration and ire were shown on the leader of opposition in the Lok Sabha that the interests of a region were sold out in view of her proximity to Sonia and so on and so forth. It is easy to believe so as it was a decision taken without revealing to the nation till last minute. Everyone was in for a shock. On careful analysis the decision seems to be far sighted. One reason that might have driven them to the decision might have been to see the issue was closed permanently and if any legal problems arose the blame naturally would go to Congress. And even if BJP opposed the bill, the blame would have been in their back yard.  After passing the bill also, Mr. Kamal Nath stated it exposed the BJP double standards. 

Now, let us go back to where we started, whether the bill is constitutionally valid. Article 3 of the constitution was already challenged in AP High Court. Then there is one more article, Andhra Pradesh specific. It is Article 371 D. It states, inter alia

371D. Special provisions with respect to the State of Andhra Pradesh.-
(1) The President may by order made with respect to the State of Andhra Pradesh provide, having regard to the requirements of the State as a whole, for equitable opportunities and facilities for the people belonging to different parts of the State, in the matter of public employment and in the matter of education, and different provisions may be made for various parts of the State.


This article is AP specific. Hence, any division in Andhra Pradesh State without annulling this article from the constitution would be "ultra vires" the constitution, many legal experts argue. Even the Attorney General and Law Ministry were said to have advised the government similarly, as per news reports. Even the leader of opposition suggested that constitution amendment was required but her plea fell on deaf ears. As there is nothing for the opposition to lose even if they voted for the bill. If, on one of these grounds the bill fails to stand legal scrutiny, Congress is in big trouble. If, on the other hand Supreme Court upholds the bill, it does not alter congress position any better as it is bound to be washed out in May,2014. 

All said and done the brazen manner the bill was bulldozed in the Lok Sabha left the world's largest bureaucracy bruised beyond repair. It gave a handle to any future rulers as selfish as the present one to pass bills that suit them without deliberating. It is like "fence eating the crop"


                                                            VANDE MATARAM


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This blog, written soon after the Bill on AP State Reorganization was passed is published now, as both SC and AP HC took cognizance of the petitions challenging the Bill. During the year 1969 the Bill passed by Parliament on Nationalisation of Banks was struck down by the SC as it violated Constitutional provisions. If, one of these courts stays operation of the bill till final verdict, as speculated by interested parties, the whole exercise goes into tailspin. The onus falls on the next government to make it foolproof. Hence, a strong government at the Centre is the need of the hour. The ball is people's court in as much much as it is in Legal Courts. The cases are coming up for preliminary hearing in 1st week of May, probably.




                        




Monday, February 17, 2014



THE MEDIAAPCON


The caged parrot flew away. Love story that began in end 2013, ended right at the beginning  of 2014. Right. Illicit relations usually end instantly. Here it did not end. Behind screens it is continuing. It is common to blame a "woh" for the stress between the "pati" and "patni". So, while leaving the cage, Kejri blamed BJP for trapping his party's illicit mate, the Congress. This did not stand scrutiny of general public but for some shouting Gods and Goddesses on the TV Screens. 

It is not about Ambani, not so much about the LG, not about the constitution nor about corruption. It is about Kejriwal. It is about his realization that he is not fit to rule. The very second day in office, he realized this fact.  He found everything around him honky dory. He entered the "gas chamber" willingly and started complaining about the gas around. The very minute he entered a system which he wanted to change, he started searching escape routes. But, the 'bear hug" of his mate was so tight that he did not find an escape route. "Management lies within the system but leadership lies on it". He forgot the fact that he was not a manager but a deemed leader. 

He started with a bang and ended with a whimper. Supported by a Media that played to the tunes of the Grand Old Party, Kejri became an overnight hero. So, he took some controversial decisions, to start with. He did not care about the long term implications of these decisions. In the meanwhile, his proteges in the party and government started playing Robin Hood. To save skin of these Robin Hoods, he sat on a Dharna and to escape from the negative consequences of such a foolish action he struck a deal with the Central Government. 

He feigned criticizing Congress, his mentor in chief for public consumption. But, his ire was on Modi, who was taking longer strides to power in Delhi day after day. If he lost more time, he would lose and his chief mentor would lose . So a script was written in Congress head quarters. It reads like "escape route made easy". As per the script, he would make  a Jan Lokpal Bill (JLP). He would insist on presenting it for passage in the assembly and challenges both congress and BJP, (main target being BJP). He knew it was unconstitutional. And as per script the Central Government would throw a spanner. Through LG, they would say he was not within his powers to pass the JLP without prior permission. But he would stand his ground. Congress would stand its. Now the onus would fall on BJP. BJP rightly opposed it, come what may. They did not need to play crude politics to gain power. They are very much on their way to power in Delhi. So, it ended there.

Though, he was not defeated on the floor of the house he resigned. He assumed "self martyrdom" by penning a "political suicide" note blaming both congress and BJP. As he still maintains more than cordial relations with congress, his target was BJP. It did not click. People did not throng the streets as it happened in AP in 1984 when NTR was removed from power by Indira Gandhi. The response was muted. The few hundreds that gathered outside his residence were called through SMS messages. They left after making a little noise for consumption of a pliant media.

It was a script well written. Bang after one day of his leaving office, the party announces 700% jump in donations. It occupies head lines in the pliant media. Then pat comes the announcement of candidates of AAP to fight the "who is who" in congress. This fits the bill right. People think that AAP has no indirect alliance with congress. "See, they announced candidate against Rahul Gandhi!" people would start talking, they assumed. The reality is many congress leaders will drop from contesting elections. Those like Rahul and Sonia will search for safer constituencies down South like AP and Karnataka. One reason for pushing the AP Reorganization Bill is for safer constituencies in Telangana. So, the list is fake and for public consumption. We need not be surprised if truth that this is also done at the behest of the hidden hand, comes out. Congress wants an unstable government at the Centre in 2014. So they prop up all ambitious leaders through back door. If Modi wins, it is their final chance to win again. The party might disintegrate into oblivion. They want to prevent it at any cost. So, this unethical game of dice is played. And ambitious men (not a leader yet) like Kejri fall prey easily.

Behind the heroics, he is conceited. Behind the open defiance of the system, there is a con artist. Behind all the assumption of innocence there is a falsehood. Behind all truth he feigns there is always a lie. Behind all the love for the aam admi there is ambition to rule the rabble. Ambition is not wrong. But within seven weeks he exposed himself to public scrutiny. All his weak traits, that were buried in astrology books all these days, came into the open. 

It is time the middle classes who understood him explained this to the poor and illiterate. They should open up a front to showcase his failures and the danger that India will slip if such an ambitious leader is allowed to climb the ladder of power. We suffered a decade of tyranny under an ambitious leader. Let this one be nipped in the bud. 

But Modi stands tall in the midst of all the din caused by these minions. He would win hands down. It is a fact that will dawn on India in May, 2014.

VANDE MATARAM

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Wednesday, February 5, 2014



WILL THE BILL PASS MUSTER?


Division of AP State is inevitable, if not immediately, in near future. The Telangana Bill is ready to be presented in the Rajya Sabha on 10th February, as per the Home Minister. We can not rely on his words in view of our past experience. High drama is being played on streets of Delhi by the "puppeteer" Congress  leaders from AP including its own CM. There are two questions here. "Why is it being introduced in the RS, instead of LS where UPA has numbers. Is it to show BJP/TDP in bad light, instead of YSRCP? The bigger question will be, "What next? Will it be passed?" While protagonists of Telangana are over optimistic politically, on ground there are no celebrations which shows people are neither too enthused if it were passed nor are too depressed if it fails muster. After all, all the women in the country were not too depressed that "Women reservation Bill" was not passed. In a similar way, politicians on the other side, except a few that want to reap financial benefits that flow through bifurcation, too are over optimistic about the failure of the bill. On the ground there is not much opposition to bifurcation. People are neither too enthused about bifurcation bill not being passed nor too depressed that it would be passed. Then what is this sound fury on Telugu News Channels about?  There are about one thousand political leaders on the Telangana side., who are optimistic to be the CM in case the state is formed. They have followers in and outside media. Likewise, there are a thousand businessmen turned politicians from coastal Andhra who invested heavily in Hyderabad who fear they will lose the booty if they lose Hyderabad. So, they raise the bargaining pitch with the Congress High Command for grant of all the tenders for the new capital on that side. They have followers in media and outside. The cross talk of these few people on both sides is that is about the sound and fury.

Is a common man that has come to Hyderabad and settled there for work afraid of bifurcation? Is a middle class man that has purchased land or building in Hyderabad afraid of bifurcation? Is there fear for security of Andhra people in Hyderabad? Is the film industry that has settled in Hyderabad for good. afraid of attacks on them? For all these. the answer is, "no". None is afraid of any repercussions. Hyderabad is one of the safest and the most peaceful cities in the country. There is no animosity between people at the ground level.Why was such fear sought to be created? One politician, who appears he is all for Telangana, has left the cat among the pigeons the day division was announced. He knows that once the state is formed new players come on the scene and he will be relegated to background. What happened to Sibu Soren? So he wants the pot boiling. He said all Andhra People living in Hyderabad should leave forthwith. So, the debate was initiated. It is anybody's guess that the said champion of Telangana in active connivance with Congress, himself may stall the bill from being passed, if he wants so. It is a fait accompli. This may be the first and foremost hurdle in the passage of the bill. Or for allowing the state to be formed he will place himself in such a position that he will occupy the CM chair. But the 1000 and odd CM aspirants from Congress will never allow that.

BJP is in a position to call the shots now. Narendra Modi made deep inroads even in rural segments from Coastal Andhra side. He is the 'blue eyed' boy now. In Telangana the party has a sizable presence already and Modi enhanced the pitch. BJP supported division of the state from the beginning and would have proceeded with the formation of Telangana along with other states but for opposition from TDP. Now, it can not go back on its principled stand. If we go by the statements of top BJP leaders for the past week, we get a feeler that BJP will not allow the bill to be passed in the present form. It will bring such amendments that Congress will not be able to accept without antagonizing the politicians from Telangana. So the amendments fall through and so too the bill. BJP leaders, in no uncertain terms, are saying the formation has to wait till 2018 until a new capital is constructed the other side. This news is sweet to the businessmen - politicians of Andhra as they get the tenders and from Telangana too as the concept of joint capital does not arise. So, the champion of Telangana, bending backwards to support the BJP argument and ally with them instead of with dying Congress too. are bright. He has two advantages. One, he will be in the news as a champion for four more years and later he will be the uncrowned king. With TRS+TDPTG Forum on one side and TDP the other, BJP will be able to decimate Congress and YSRCP in one shot. So, with overt support of TDP and cover support of TRS, BJP will most probably stall the bill. As no one is untouchable in politics, TDP might veer around to the arrangement in its present and future interest. So the bill goes and with it the congress goes.Now Congress can not openly ally with YSRCP also, as doing so will be suicidal in Telangana region. 

Knowing this, why did Congress risk the introduction of the half baked bill? Congress wants TRS to merge with them so that they can get some more seats in addition to the 50+ they are confident of winning in the country. TRS is not committing itself to merger. So, there is a hurry to introduce the bill, say they are the champions of Telangana but their hands are tied. At least there will be a face saver. The second reason is to show BJP/TDP in bad light. Even though there is strong opposition from their own party MPs to the bill Congress is constantly targeting BJP/TDP with this in view. If the BJP stalls the bill Congress can go round blaming them for stalling Telangana and reap benefit. After all Congress knows it is sailing against the wind and is fast sinking. Any straw that is found will be caught hold of by the party. One more reason why Congress is so brazenly pushing the bill is that they have a feeling the bill will be stayed by courts even before introduction, at which point they can hit the road saying despite their best efforts they are not in a position to pass the bill. "Vote us back, we will give you Telangana", will be their slogan again. Since 1969 Congress has been playing the same game. 

BJP will not, on its own, oppose the bill but will allow congress politicians bicker among themselves and try to throw spanner in the efforts of Congress to make them villain. Most other parties already announced they will not support any other bill than 'vote on account' and Congress too seems not making sincere efforts to convince them except doing lip service. Will the bill pass the muster in Parliament with so many imponderables? We have to wait and see who wins this game of one-up-man-ship in AP's murky politics.


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Disclaimer: The author is neither a strong protagonist nor antagonist to division. But he is one of the majority who think that the issue be resolved forthwith. Politicians on both sides reaped maximum rewards by keeping the issue alive since 1956. Champions of TG, United Andhra or Hyderabad as UT have no real interest in the future of both regions. They are interested in their own welfare. Let there be a lasting solution. But that can not be done in a hurry as is sought to be done by Congress for few votes and seats. 

There is no sanctity to the views of the author, as in India and specially in AP anything might happen. The author's mind too is as hazy as the AP politics. Hence, no hard feelings.