Modi and Nitish Kumar vs Tejashwi in Bihar election

Radhakanta Barik

The first chief minister of Bihar Shri Krishna Singh known as Sri Babu was a well-read person. While I was conducting Ph.D. work on Bihar's land question I found there was a book stall in the main road of the city where many of the books were read by Sri Babu and the owner of the book stall showed me some books which have been underlined by him. His intellectual depth made him to show that zamindari system should go and he gave a speech in the state assembly," it is a primitive system must go."

Some years back a senior journalist from Times of India went to interview Laloo Yadav. His editor called him and told," they need masala by which their paper circulation can increase. That metropolitan elite had a thinking of Laloo as a 'buffoon' he would have no robust commonsense. The Journalist Shri Jha raised a question regarding Madam Sonia Gandhi and she would be Prime Minister of India. Laloo answered that in Peru a Latin American state where the President's post was held by a Japanese born but Peru citizen. Mr Jha told me that editorial staff got shocked of the knowledge of Laloo Yadav including his consciousness of international events and personalities. Last election he carried books by the RSS leaders and their opinions related to reservation and position of women. He read out from the pages of book Bunches of thought by Guru Golwakar. This shocked the journalists of the electronic media. He went to Pakistan and he wrote a book on his journey to Pakistan. These journalists doubted his English knowledge but he wrote a book in English. He as the Railway Minister got invited by Harvard University to give a lecture on Management and the intellectuals of Patna I met in a hotel who told that he messed up Bihar as the chief minister and he had to prove something that made him to be a good Railway Minister. It is simple high caste bias against him and the metropolitan intellectuals always underestimate the intellectual level of Hindi speaking intellectuals belonging to backward castes. Today his son is able to impress the audience and giving a befitting reply to Modi and Nitish Kumar an engineer cum chief minister. As I do research on politics of Bihar I found after Srikrishna Singh the first chief minister Laloo Yadav a well read person and he spends his leisure on reading books and journals. Staying in jail today he is able to read a lot of books.

Bihar is forefront of political change. They threw away Yogi who was forced to leave the dais. Today's meeting of Modi was stage managed. In the same place in Bhagalpur there was a massive meeting by Tejeshwi. It indicates that democracy and Constitution are going to be saved by people of India.

After fifteen years rule by the BJP the PM Modi came and gave public address in Bihar and told that he would bring Naya Bihar or New Bihar. For fifteen years what they were doing in Bihar no roads no employment no industry which is a part of Naya Bihar. There is an Odiya proverb "etene din ganthi baja rahe rahe." that they are ringing the bells which means that they were busy in non productive works in Bihar. Conspiring against the most popular leader of Bihar Laloo Yadav  in jail. The whole CBI was busy in charging the case against Laloo by Asthana the IPS officer who was responsible in falsely implicating the Muslims in attacks on the train in Godhra which proved his loyalty to Modi and he was allowed to hold a marriage function of his daughter which costs 60 crores. More one gets corrupt one gets rewarded under the Modi Raj. He is now in charge of Narcotic Board who is harassing Rhea Chakravarty which is beyond his power. Naya Bihar will not wait for Modi and Asthana a Bihari person. It is going to Tejeswi as the leader of the Ganthabandhan.

The BJP leaders Modi and Yogi are talking in the public meetings of Bihar regarding Art 370 and Yogi suggested people from Bhojpur to go to Kashmir and settle there. It is a deadly proposition of colonisation of some spaces where different cultural communities live there. This is against the Indian constitution and spirit of federation. Hindutva is a combination of internal colonialism plus external imperialism. They want to implement the NRC in Assam to have colonisation of the places inhabited by the Muslims. Their akhanda Bharat project is to conquer the space controlled by Pakistan. Such an imperialist and colonialist party was rebuked by the Bihari public. Yogi ran away from the meeting in Bihar and Modi realized the imminent defeat in Bihar for which he did not speak about Nitish kumar their chief minister for last fifteen years. He wanted to save some cake for the BJP but people of Bihar does not differentiate between BJP and Nitish both are the same. Their anger is  against their agenda of colonialism and imperialism.

Modi and Nitish Kumar are in 70s and they are confronting a person who is in early thirties. The young man Tejeshwi  is getting waves of crowd who may  bring the election victory. His symbolic war is against the deadly powers of three Ms - money, muscle and media. As media has already predicted Nitish Kumar is winning with the BJP but situations are growing against them. Modi is entering into the battle and went  for campaigning. It is out of fear that they are fighting the young man in the battle. This is going to be battle which cannot be compared with the Mahabharata as there was a person Abhimanyu who was killed in the battle. Here Tejaswi means brightness is going to burn these oldies.

 A police officer belonging to Muslim community keeping beard has been removed from the job in UP which is against the practice of secularism in India. Indian secularism is different from Europe where identity is not getting publicized while the state maintains secular policy specifically French secularism. Here we have different approach to secularism as our policy allows each to maintain his or her identity. A Brahmin Hindu by keeping his pigtail and sindur mark on his or her forehead is not debarred in India and a Muslim public servant can be allowed to keep beard as Indian secularism allows keeping ones identity. This is being discussed in the book on Identities by Prof Amartya Sen.

Kaushik Basu's discussion on economic scenario with Karan Thapar is the best till today. He has placed economic growth in the context of social capital which encourages people from outside to bring the investment into Indian economy. The way politics is being handled by Modi sarkar from 2014 this trust has gone. This has affected the economic growth badly. Here politics and social scenario are playing an important role in pushing down the economy. Advisor to Man Mohan Singh the former Prime Minister raised a point that because of social and communal riots, the economy has not grown and its GDP has gone down and unemployment rate has grown. In the post 1992 Babri masjid politics proves this point that politics of the Ram Mandir affected the state of UP badly and its economy went down badly. Its industrial growth turned negative and agricultural growth negative except population growth is positive. This communal politics has resulted in such a mess. I did a study on communal politics of Kanpur city the only industrial city of UP where the industrialists belong to Banias of UP and the workers belong to Muslims. The riots in the city because of the Ram Mandir issue affected the industrialists so badly they started crying. In our interview they told clearly that communal politics of the BJP has destroyed the economy of Kanpur. This is the lesson one gets from the Mandir politics of the RSS in UP which proves Prof Basu's point of view.

There is a report titled as Monetisatin of idle assets' Railways Defence and BSNL in line. This was expected from Modi as he is selling all public sectors and then he will sell the land. But the land is not an idle assets as these are required for planned growth of these important sectors specifically Defence which Modi claims that nationalism is equivalent to soldiers. Tomorrow soldiers need their residences or defence needs any advanced technological plan which can be used. Modi is now ready to sell land as he has not earned this. I remember the story from my father when he sold land for our education and then his cousin brothers came down and told, "how can you sell land" it is difficult to buy. My father answered that he had bought these lands and selling these assets for educating his children. Here Modi is selling it for his expensive life style going by jet plane and expensive dresses. In the village there are bankrupt people who sell their landed property for their luxuries and leave nothing for their children. I have seen those parents are cruel to their children and they have nothing to fall back and they lead life of destitute. These so called idle assets are going to be sold by Modi which he does not want to leave for the future generation. He wants to sell everything to Adani and Ambani and keep nothing for the children of nation.

Modi brought mob into politics who could create noises without fire. They could create hatred against a section of people. After winning the support of mob his party initiated violence against the Muslims and Dalits and women. Mob did not remain within its legal and constitutional parameters. Their money and muscle power successfully created ruckus in society. Social harmony got disturbed in many parts of India. In many places riots got engineered and instead of culprits got arrested; the social activists are getting arrested in the name of conspiracy. The worst is the arrest of a Malayalam journalist who had gone to UP to write for the journal and he is in jail in the name of conspiracy against the Hathras murder and rape of a young woman. Mob politics has not come to end but there is a bright sign in the political horizon of India. Bihar is the heartland of Indian politics. It is showing the way. That crowd have come who are more disciplined and organised and acting against the mob politics of Hindutva. Their actions are targeted against these evil forces. It looks like the politics of India is going towards the saving democracy and saving constitution.

CSDS does election studies which is like playing a magician bringing out hen out of the hat which creates laughter in public. Their study before 2004 general election predicted three hundred seats in the Lok Sabha for the BJP as a part of the NDA. The prediction came out one month before the election date. I was in Baroda university hundreds of people thronged into university guest house to listen to the prediction and after listening they all felt thrilled. They went out and a senior civil servant former Director of Indian Institute of Public Administration Shri M C Gupta wanted to know my prediction. I told him the figure would be around 130. His prediction was 250 for the NDA cum BJP. After the election result came out he invited me for a dinner as I was correct and the CSDS study turned into a bluff. Present election study on coming Bihar election has come out by the CSDS that the NDA would get the majority where as the Ganthabandhan would get somewhere 70 seats. But it seems that the way crowd movement for the Tejeshwi is proving a point that the Ganthaabandhan would get the majority and the BJP and JDU would get less than 70 seats.

Prof Radhakanta Barik (retd), Indian Institute of Public Administration, New Delhi

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Oct 31, 2020

Prof. Radhakanta Barik

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