Friday, May 9, 2014

Chanakya-II (sequel opens May 16)

Now we finally understand how the Tamil Shudras must feel: dude where is my self-respect revolution? Entire rivers of blood, sweat and tears have flown down from Tala-Kaveri to Poompuharam, yet the poor Dravidas are still toiling under the thumb of a super-caste (Iyengar Brahmin) decider.

Moving onto national news, it is reported that Pranab Mukherjee made a sudden surprise symbolic declaration of neutrality, after all preparations were in place for a postal vote (May 12 ballot in Kolkata).

This is not the most important vote (of confidence) from the first citizen. It is likely that on May 16th there will be no political combination with an absolute majority. As per the Indian Constitution this is when the President gains maximum power to inflict maximum harm or good, depending on the point of view. 

Consider (as an imperfect analogy) what transpired in Delhi recently. No party got an absolute majority in the state elections. When BJP as the largest party did not want to rule as a minority govt,the Aam Admi party came to power with support from the Congress. Then wonder-boy Arvind (AK-49) Kejriwal cast aside his crown and in order to fight for the highest chair. Lt Governor Najeeb Jung is now the de-facto ruler and having a lot of fun by beating up evil black marketeers (see below). If new elections are held the AAP may secure an absolute majority on the back of new generation muslim voters.

In the Lok Sabha elections it is likely that BJP/NDA will get the max seats but will fall short of a simple majority. In that event, the President has the discretionary powers to invite the BJP to form the government. If history is any guide, BJP will be able to bribe small parties to form a coalition of the (weak) willing. Sanjaya Baru has confirmed in his book that Sonia purposefully denied Pranab Babu the Prime Minister's seat (in favor of the docile Manmohan). The sudden flip to "neutrality" may be a sign  that the (life-long) family servant will request for a (cold) dish named revenge. 

Legend has it that the original Chanakya used his super-powers to place a Chandal (dalit) on the throne. When a new-age Chanakya blesses a (fake?) Shudra king it will be one for the books as well. 


On the morrow of May 16 all eyes will be on Rashtrapati Bhavan. As a stickler for constitutional propriety, President Pranab Mukherjee will invite the leader of the largest political party or coalition to form the government and prove – within a reasonable period of time – that it enjoys majority support in the Lok Sabha. No one seriously doubts that the leader will be Narendra Modi. Should he realise the goal he set for himself when he embarked on the election campaign – 272+ – the new government will be in place without a major hiccup. 

Modi’s room for manoeuvre will narrow if BJP-led NDA fails to reach the half-way mark. And this is where President Mukherjee’s formidable political skills and experience will come into play. He knows that a shortfall of 20 seats would spell disquiet in BJP ranks; a shortfall of 40 seats would spell acute discomfiture; any figure below that would see power equations within BJP itself change to Modi’s disadvantage.
 
A free hand for Modi would mean a faster, if inequitable, rate of economic growth and a cleaner, if not always transparent or accountable, governance. Whether it would also encourage him to rein in Hindu and Muslim fanatics with equal zeal is still a moot point. These dangers would subside to some extent if he has to rope in allies to form the government. Much would of course depend on their number. The higher their numbers, the greater the risks he would run to head the government or indeed to enable NDA to assume office.
 
Should such a scenario unfold, President Mukherjee could well be the one to orchestrate a denouement of the frenzied dance of Indian democracy. He won’t spare anyone who has slighted him in the past. And he won’t spare anyone who is likely to chip away at the foundations of the republic. Both have much to fear from a Brahmin of the finest Nehruvian vintage.
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    In a departure from the recent past, President Pranab Mukherjee on Friday decided not to vote in the Lok Sabha elections in order to maintain his "political neutrality". The decision came as a surprise since Mukherjee, a registered voter in south Kolkata, had ordered for a postal ballot and would have been the first head of the state to use it. He was slated to cast his vote on May 12.

In fact, the tradition for a President to vote is fairly recent with KR Narayanan breaking the convention of "political neutrality" to become the first to vote in the 1998 parliamentary polls. Mukherjee's immediate predecessors — APJ Abdul Kalam and Pratibha Patil — had voted in the 2004 and 2009 general elections respectively. Both were registered voters in Delhi.

Sources said all formalities for Mukherjee's voting through postal ballot had been completed. He is a registered voter in 160 Rashbehari, part of the South Kolkata parliamentary seat. However, he decided not to exercise his franchise, bringing back the convention followed by many past Presidents.

South Kolkata will see a multi-cornered contest with Congress fielding Mala Roy and BJP nominating state president Tathagata Roy. Trinamool Congress has fielded sitting MP Subrata Bakshi whereas CPM's candidate is Nandini Mukherjee, a professor.

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The crackdown against hoarders and blackmarketeers will continue till the time President's rule remains in Delhi, Lt Governor Najeeb Jung said Thursday.

"More raids are in store for wrongdoers at public offices. The crackdown will not end till the time President's rule in Delhi gets over," Jung told IANS.

Jung had recently ordered massive raids at fair price shops, petrol pumps and gas agencies.

"We will act tough against hoarders and blackmarketeers," he said.

Delhi is under President's rule since Feb 17, when it was imposed five days after Aam Aadmi Party chief Arvind Kejriwal announced the resignation of his government. - See more at: http://www.smetimes.in/smetimes/news/indian-economy-news/2014/May/09/crackdown-against-blackmarketeer-continue29281.html#sthash.hbGBFHjJ.dpuf


The crackdown against hoarders and blackmarketeers will continue till the time President's rule remains in Delhi, Lt Governor Najeeb Jung said Thursday. "More raids are in store for wrongdoers at public offices. The crackdown will not end till the time President's rule in Delhi gets over," Jung told IANS.

Jung had recently ordered massive raids at fair price shops, petrol pumps and gas agencies.
"We will act tough against hoarders and blackmarketeers," he said.


Delhi is under President's rule since Feb 17, when it was imposed five days after Aam Aadmi Party chief Arvind Kejriwal announced the resignation of his government. 

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Link (1): http://liveblogs.indiatimes.com/talking-terms/if-mission-272-fails-rashtrapati-bhavan-may-hold-the-trump-card/
Link (2): http://www.smetimes.in/smetimes/news/indian-economy-news/2014/May/09/crackdown-against-blackmarketeer-continue29281.html
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regards