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First among equals?

| MUKESH RANJAN
Published Mar 27, 2014, 10:00 am IST
Updated Apr 8, 2019, 9:13 am IST
We are a democratic party
Pic for representational purpose only
 Pic for representational purpose only

The Congress has been a past master in the flawed discourse on judgmental depiction of the Bharatiya Janata Party as being undemocratic. Akin to “the pot calling the kettle black”, the Congress is invariably showing signs of Modi-phobia in every sphere of political discourse.

The BJP has never been led or managed by a family. Diverse leaders with divergent opinions confabulate and a structured dialogue pervades it. Having been decimated to two parliamentary seats in 1984, it realised very early the impact of building an organisation from the block level upwards.

 

In a country as diverse as India, a totalitarian political dispensation would not attract the numerous allies the BJP has managed to get in the last three months in most of the states. Responsible and empowered leaders have interacted with regional outfits for honourable and mutually beneficial electoral alliances.

The media extensively reports friction points that are isolated in the larger context. There are leaders who have risen from the ranks and who have worked for national cohesion of stitching together political partnerships by placing India first. Such leaders surely graduate to a higher pool of shared decision-making at the parliamentary board level and that’s when they become “more equal” than their contemporaries.

 

The party embraces such occasions of rising, paying utmost respect to those who graduate to this pool of more celebrated “equality”. That’s the meaning of equality in BJP’s dictionary. Dissent is a sign of democratic churning which the BJP understands. BJP president Rajnath Singh showed sagacity and his innate accommodative democratic skills by heeding to the clamour of the BJP cadres to pitch fork Narendra Modi as the BJP’s PM candidate.

The cohesion between Mr Singh and Mr Modi, along with other senior leaders, is evident from the diminished level of dissension despite having numerous claimants vying for each of the 400-plus seats the party is contesting. Jockeying and jostling for tickets, balancing diverse interest groups and their aspirations is a near Herculean task.

 

Nearly every other party (the Congress, the Samajwadi Party, the Nationalist Congress, the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam) is like a family-run conglomerate that issues diktats and “shahi firmans” right from party appointments to ticket distribution. Rahul Gandhi’s statement that the BJP is run by one man “Mr Modi” is specious and fallacious given the fact the he tears up ordinances cleared by his own Cabinet.

His undemocratic espousal of pushing ordinances beyond the functioning of Parliament met with a swift rebuff from the President of India. Definitely by leaps and bounds the BJP is much more democratic than the Congress or other political dispensations.
 

 

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