Sunday, October 25, 2009
Recently, the results of the assembly elections of three states are announced and as was being speculated, Congress won the elections at all the three places. Where in Arunachal and Haryana, Congress won with its head high after performing well in the last term, in Maharashtra, the victory for Congress didn't come due to their performance at the helm rather it came besides its performance which in no way was up to the mark.
Congress was up there in the government in Maharashtra for the last two consecutive terms amounting to a total of 10 yrs. There was a complete list of failures for the govt which were going against them and included the suicides of farmers, the meagre situation of electricity, the hiking prices, the terrorist attacks, and above all a double anti-incumbency. Despite all these factors and many more others, Congress led alliance managed to get the majority seats in the elections and are again forming a government for the next five years.
Watching the performance of the government the result of the elections must be bewildering but when seeking the answer to this bewilderment comes into the mind one question, whether it is Congress' victory or BJP's loss. Now, this is a very important question to be answered in the context of democracy in India. A government that has failed on all the posts for 10 consecutive years, if manages to be in power again is a serious question in itself to the democracy.
In a democracy, the government is, no doubt, important but the more important aspect is the opposition. Being people's rule, Democracy is not only about government being formed by people's representatives, but it also has to have a machinery that makes the government answerable to the public and this machinery is what we call the Opposition. In the path of constructiveness, criticism is the best guide. This makes opposition as responsible as and some times even more than the government itself.
In Maharashtra, if the 10 yrs of Congress governance have been bad the opposition is even worse. Except for protesting against the north indians, the opposition (paticularly Shiv Sena) have never been seen bothered about the policies of the government. If this was the scene in Shiv Sena, the other pillar of the opposition in Maharashtra, the BJP have been in a phase that is probably the worst in its lifetime. The internal conflicts that came so superficially in the party after the General Elections debacle has started to show its consequences. Losing Rajasthan, getting only 4 seats in Haryana and now failing to grab the golden chance of anti-incumbency in Maharashtra have all exposed the real status of BJP as a national party. Going with this speed, maybe I am exaggerating somewhat, in the next decade we are only going to see BJP as a party restricted to states like Gujarat or Madhya Pradesh only.
The most disheartening thing about results of this election has been the response of BJP to this loss. They have hit a new low for their standards here in being bad losers. Having lost such an opportunity, BJP is still not ready to admit to its failure. An important top national leader of the party Mr. Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, after the loss, is found on a national news channel saying that this EVM, the electronic voting machine, has become electronic victory machine. I don't know what he really meant by saying this. If he was raising the question of some technical faults then why not his party has got any benefits anywhere; are these faults predujicially engineered in favour of the Congress, I don't really understand. If this was not what he meant then it must be a question on the Election Commission itself and then it is even worse a situation.
The failure of the opposition to cash in on a golden opportunity like this and then not admitting to its failure is nothing but its failure in imparting its duty to the motto of Democracy. If this remains the scene in the country all the times, it really is nothing but The Death of Indian Democracy.