BJP no longer coy about agenda to transform India into one-party Hindutva dictatorship
Being armed with the various instruments of the State, Amit Shah has proclaimed that no state can be immune to the conquering drive of the BJP, thereby leading to ‘era of BJP in India’ for 30-40 years
The drive to establish one-party authoritarian rule was clearly expressed by Union Home Minister Amit Shah at the national executive meeting of the BJP held in Hyderabad on July 2-3. Moving the political resolution, Shah said that the next 30-40 years will be the ‘era of the BJP in India’.
It is a small mercy that he did not talk about BJP rule for the next thousand years in the style of the Third Reich.
However, three or four decades of the ‘BJP era’ would be sufficient to transform India into a one-party Hindutva dictatorship.
Amit Shah also boasted in his speech that the BJP would end ‘family rule’ in West Bengal and Telangana and come to power in Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Odisha and Kerala. The confidence that he exuded about this “operation capture” obviously stemmed from the toppling of the MVA government in Maharashtra and installation of a BJP-controlled government in its place.
The destabilisation of a non-BJP government was taken to a whole new level in Maharashtra. It is no more confined to simple bribery of MLAs and horse-trading using huge amounts of money. Apart from such conventional methods, the full weight of the State and its institutions and agencies were brought into play to break up the Shiv Sena and the government in the state.
As the events unfolded in Maharashtra, the Supreme Court stayed the duration of a show-cause notice issued by the deputy speaker of the assembly to 16 rebel Shiv Sena MLAs asking them why they should not be disqualified. It extended the period for replying to the notice given to the legislators by more than two weeks, which ended up making the whole move infructuous.
This goes against the letter and spirit of the anti-defection law as the process of deciding on disqualification falls within the jurisdiction solely of the legislature and the scope for judicial review comes only after the decision-making process is complete.
The role of the governor was blatant. Bhagat Singh Koshyari had not allowed the election of the speaker to the legislative assembly for nearly 17 months during the tenure of MVA government by citing some litigation going on regarding some rules. However, with the new BJP-rebel Sena government being sworn-in, the governor found no problem in fixing the date for the election of the speaker two days hence.
Throughout the tenure of the MVA government, the governor behaved more like an RSS functionary.
An important weapon used against the MVA government was the central agencies, particularly the Enforcement Directorate (ED). The ED was deployed to investigate and arraign several Shiv Sena and NCP leaders. Two of the ministers belonging to the NCP were put in jail under the draconian money laundering charges. Escaping the persecution of the central agencies became a compelling reason to defect to the side of the BJP.
Being armed with the various instruments of the State, Amit Shah has proclaimed that no state can be immune to the conquering drive of the BJP. If states like Tamil Nadu and Kerala are to be won over, that cannot be done through political activities, but only by the use of the full armoury of the State. There can be only “one nation, one party”.
What the ‘BJP era’ portends was seen in the ominous developments that occurred in the days preceding the BJP national executive meeting. The authoritarian juggernaut rolled on with the incarceration of Teesta Setalvad and R B Sreekumar as punishment for their temerity in approaching the highest court for justice for the victims of the Gujarat pogrom of 2002. The arrest of Mohammed Zubair and the filing of false cases for his independent journalism and fact-checking was a clear signal that the regime will continue its crackdown on the independent media. The ‘BJP era’ will ensure a pliant media and no place for dissenting views.
That Amit Shah’s communal authoritarian vision of a new ‘BJP era’ is not just rhetoric was confirmed by his leader’s exhortations in a public meeting. PM Narendra Modi wants Hyderabad to become Bhagyanagar. This does not signify just a change in the name of a city – it is the marker for a new Hindutva era.
Views are personal