Indian politics: Will efforts to resurrect old Janata Party yield fruits?
-Dr. Abdul Ruff
India has got many senior politicians and everyone wants to be the prime minister of India and each keeps dreaming…
Recent days saw hectic meetings of non-Congress and non-BJP politicians to relaunch the old Janata party. The six Janata Parivar parties which are in the process of merging together to taken on BJP and its allied parties, are RJD, SP, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar-led Janata Dal (United), former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda led Janata Dal (Secular), Om Prakash Chautala’s Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) and Samajwadi Janata Party (SJP). H D Deve Gowda was chief minister of Karnataka before becoming the Indian PM.
Every leader of these parties dreams of becoming India’s next PM, probably with Congress party support.
According to the media reports, the six parties of the erstwhile Janata Parivar would announce their merger soon following a meeting in which the name of the new political entity and its symbol will be decided. Currently each of the six constituents of the erstwhile Janata Parivar has a separate symbol. A meeting at Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav’s residence on 5 April was expected to be attended by Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, JD-U chief Sharad Yadav, RJD president Lalu Prasad and representatives from Indian National Lok Dal and Samajwadi Janata Party. Mulayam, whose SP has the largest number of MPs among the parties which have planned the proposed merger, will be the chairman of the new umbrella entity.
The wheel symbol of Janata Dal was frozen in 1999 as the party was split into JD-U led by Sharad Yadav and JD-S under HD Deve Gowda when the former decided to join the then NDA government led by Atal Bihari Vajpayee. The two parties were then allotted separate symbols. Sources said what while the new party’s name could be either Samajwadi Janata Party or Samajwadi Janata Dal, the party is actively considering the wheel symbol as well as the cycle, which is currently the SP party symbol.
Janata Party which ruled India under Morarji Desai in the post-Emergency era, collapsed without completing the term and split into several constituent parties, including the BJP as its new avatar of Jana Sangh and it strengthened its position increasingly as the only party with some committed Hindutva carders by using the nomenclature Janata Party prefixed with Bharatiya, meaning India.
Janata party was the first ever political experiment and it failed because of selfish leaders with individual ideas for corruption, leading to sinking of Janata party half way through.
Virtually the same ideas and family rules are going to form a party as another political experiment. If earlier they were opposed to the then ruling party the Congress party, now they are opposed to BJP, the ruling party of today. Essentially, every political outfit has proven to be of same rats, only the new party while AAP’s credentials remain to be tested.
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar who now takes initiative for Janata merger for the sake of people of India fed up with Congress-BJP misrule said on April 03 that merger of six parties of the erstwhile Janata Parivar was on course but denied any dates for the announcement of the unification. The date will be decided by Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav, authorised to see modalities of the merger,” Kumar said in a function at the Jagjivan Ram Research Centre at Patna, capital of Bihar.
Former Bihar CM and RJD president Lalu Prasad said the merger of six Janata Parivar parties to counter the BJP has already “happened” and Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Mulayam Singh Yadav would make a formal announcement. RJD president said that party’s national executive meeting on April 5 would discuss the issues related to merger and take stock of current political situation prevailing in the country. “There should be no doubts regarding the merger henceforth and indicated that other “secular” parties may too be invited to join the new entity that emerges out of it. Merger means merger.. We will also ask other secular parties to join the new party to combat communalism,” he said, We all will come under one flag and one symbol to counter the BJP which has cheated the country,” Prasad said.
The RJD chief was speaking to media persons after the daylong national executive meeting of his party got over at a posh hotel here in the state capital. Over 250 representatives from 21 states, including leaders like Raghuvansh Prasad Singh, Abdul Bari Siddiqui, MP Rajesh Ranjan alias Pappu Yadav, Bihar RJD president Ram Chandra Purve and others were present on the occasion.
Asked about who will be the leader of the new party after the merger, Prasad said, “It would be declared only after the new party is formed.” Attacking the saffron party, Prasad said, “I charge that BJP is the cheater of the country. Its organisation is based on cheating. It is a party based on lies.” He added that the BJP cheated the people of their votes by first promising to bring back Rs 26.5 lakh crore of black money, stashed outside the country and depositing Rs 1.5 lakh to Rs 2 lakh in everybody’s bank accounts and then saying it was just a “jumla” or a “diplomatic expression”. The RJD leader also charged the BJP of reneging on its promise of creating two crore jobs for the youth every year, and bringing a Land Acquisition Bill that would be very harmful to the farmers. The BJP promised work to every hand and water to every field, but the country is seeing exactly opposite. Jobs have been frozen. It also termed Mahatma Gandhi as a “British Agent”. We are not letting go of these things,” he said.
The six parties are hopeful that the ‘khota’ (beehive) of Narendra Modi will be rooted out from India. Even the BJP is afraid of the scenario that is emerging. Prasad also pooh-poohed the claims of BJP that Bihar was witnessing ‘jungle raj 2’ under the JD (U) rule supported by RJD. “It (BJP) has no right to say such a thing because it has turned the entire country into a ‘mahajungle’ (huge forest),” he said.
The RJD president skirted questions regarding his successor saying his whole family was in the party and the national executive meet was not called to choose his successor. “Am I not still present or what,” asked Prasad, but pointed that only “a son can succeed a father”.
One does not know if the reemergence of Janata Party would help Congress party which is lying very low following its rout at the parliamentary poll, to make a reappearance on the political scene; Because, their antagonism and target of BJP would help the waiting Congress party to obtain a face.
Delhi state poll weakened both Congress and BJP but for the former it again a complete rout. The BJP, ruing India, is aghast silent. Neither the party leaders, including PM Modi, nor any minister speaks much. They are totally disillusioned with the Delhi results, because PM Modi wanted to make Delhi. His launching pad for making both houses of parliament BJP dominated.
BJP had not expected such misfortunes awaiting the party and PM Modi in Delhi. But added to that misfortune is the return of Anna Hazare in New Delhi with a popular struggle for farmer lands. When Hazare protested for months in New Delhi, it was viewed essentially as an anti-Congress movement because the Congress led UPA government totally corrupt.
The BJP and its Sangh parivar team took full advantage of Hazare movement and even some top leaders openly supported the movement and condemned the Congress for all evils India has gathered over years.
Many BJP people thought Hazare was fighting for Hindutva forces and actively promoted him. But today, the Hazare phenomenon has come back haunting the BJP which is now ruling India.
Already BJP is unable to comprehend the phenomena of AAP and Arvind Kejriwal. Delhi CM Kejriwal is a nightmare for BJP leaders and they have lost the steam against him. BJP fears if AAP moves beyond Delhi that directly affect the Hindutva fortunes.
As the BJP I was struggling to find ways and means to contain the Kejriwal phenomenon, the Hazare phenomenon has added new worries for the BJP which thought it is going to be it s time henceforth.
The pain is too much, unbearable. The social activist the BJP thought would help it grow further is striking hard at it and, much worse, Kejriwal supports his mentor’s agricultural land bill cause which is genuine. The Hindutva supports now question the logic of Anna Hazare movements and even suggest he has lost the vision and intent he had before.
When, earlier, Muslims used to vote for Congress for free out of fear of BJP as the only available alternative to Hindutva parties now in Delhi they found AAP as the reliable and credible partner in governance. The trend is likely to spread across India. BJP is now worried more than Congress about the change of mind among Muslims.
Anna Hazare has rightly said the Modi wave was bogus and Indians had already deleted the corrupt Congress party and voted for the available alternative. In Delhi they found the right third alternative to vote for.
BJP and PM Modi are watching how their applecart is being rattled by their own nightmares. But they have to face another nightmare now- new Janata party. BJP and the RSS establishment which very meticulously planned the rise of BJP and Narendra Modi phenomenon by very tactfully using the misrule of Congress led UPA government and anti-corruption movement led by Anna Hazare and Kejriwal must have now puzzled by the prospects of a formidable Janata Party reemerging to take them head on.
PM Narendra Modi and RSS might believe these third front leaders are not genuine.
All said and done, the new Janata party has the capacity to win maximum number of parliamentary and assembly seats, especially from Bihar, UP, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, etc.
Big head ache for BJP and PM. Modi.