Voice from the Rooftop

Blog of Vincent Augustine D'Souza

Congressification of BJP

There was a time when BJP claimed it had discipline and was a party with a difference. Later on the differences among members became public knowledge and people referred to it as party with differences. As years passed BJP started to resemble Congress.

Like Congress, BJP does not have inner-party democracy. Decisions are imposed from above. Leaders in Delhi decide who should be chief minister or leader of opposition in Legislative Assembly. That is like Congress high command. MLAs defying central leadership, as happened in Karnataka, is an exception.

BJP did not associate with Gandhi except for a time when it talked of Gandhian socialism which was soon abandoned. BJP leaders were not known to fast. Raj Ghat was not a place where one expected BJP members to be present. That changed when BJP members had one day fast at Raj Ghat. Sushma Swaraj dancing to a song led to a controversy. She claimed it was a patriotic song.

Narendra Modi’s decision to go on 72 hours fast has evoked various reactions. Some call it political stunt. Yogendra Yadav talked of cat going on Haj after eating 900 rats. That can be said of Mamata Banerjee who led bandhs and blockades in West Bengal and after becoming chief minister does not want bandhs. Some say Narendra Modi is making a bid for central leadership and setting himself as a candidate in 2014. Shankarsinh Vaghela came up with 75 hours fast. Some call the fasts farce. Narendra Modi has chosen an air-conditioned hall for his fast. Some call it five-star fast. In 2002 the riots lasted 72 hours. Shankarsinh Vaghela has chosen to fast outside Sabarmati Ashram. It seems Anna Hazare’s fast had an effect on politicians.

There is not much difference between BJP and Congress on economic or foreign policy. On issues like Article 370 and uniform civil code BJP did nothing when it was in power at centre. For long BJP accused Congress of dynastic rule. Now BJP is following the same path with family members of politicians getting tickets to contest elections. Congress is property of one family. BJP is property of RSS.

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