Friday, December 28, 2007

Hindutva and radical Islam: Where the twain do meet

When you come across an article which says everything you all along wanted to say, which articulates superbly what you yourself had strongly felt, which tries to tell something that's almost a taboo to say in our media, it makes it a delightful experience to read. Dear reader, please read this column by Arun Shourie in Indian Express.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Victory for democracy

Normally, elections are fought between political parties. Media's role is ideally that of an observer. Gujarat 2007 was different. Media's role was that of an active political participant. There was a clear bias that media blatantly displayed against the incumbent. Modi, the incumbentChief-Minister, had to fight not just the Congress but also the partisan. Despite the tremendous development work which he had carried out, despite a terror free, riot free Gujarat he delivered, the media was loathe to acknowledge it. Even when they did, it was grudgingly. They called him names that can be euphemistically described as unparliamentary. Enthused by a complementary media, the Congress breached all levels of decency and called Mr. Modi 'Merchant of death'. Modi said that this would be an election only based on development agenda. But when somebody abuses you the way the Congress and the media did, that too in the midst of an election campaign, one would be forced to respond. And when he did that, he was accused of 'communalising' the agenda. But Modi carried on unperturbed.

Modi, also had to fight the very visible dissidence in his own party. The RSS also, reportedly, was not very enthusiastic about Modi's 'style of governance.' So Modi took it upon himself to carry the BJP to another victory. He placed his hope in the hands of people.

The election day arrived. People came in huge numbers. Exit pollsters theorized that large turnout means bad news for BJP. After two phases of polling, these shameless creatures called psephologists, who pride themselves on getting stupendously wrong every time, predicted that Modi may just scrape through. They said landslide victory for BJP is impossible while a congress victory is not impossible. They attributed this 'hypothetical' loss to such unverifiable reasons like 'authoritarian rule', 'Modi not being a team player' and whatnot.

On counting day, when it became increasingly clear that Modi was heading for a comfortable win, to me, it was the greatest victory for democracy. Here's a leader who goes directly to the people and ask them to vote for him for whatever good he has done to them. People respond to him and how magnificently. They give him another landslide win. It clearly showed, in a democracy, no matter who is with you or against you, you can win if people are with you. People are the power in a democracy. This was just what the Gujarat election exemplified in an unmistakable way. It also showed people will be with you if you deliver them good governance and provide an environment that's terror and violence free.

It also meant, quite significantly, that media should now have to seriously to introspect about its conduct, about its objectivity or the lack of it. Otherwise the media is sure to lose a lot of credibility pretty fast. Men like Yogendra Yadav and Dorab Sopariwala, had they been in any other job, would have been fired for their colossal failure in their job. Never have they got their predictions even remotely near the actual figures. Particularly Yadav, exhibits too much of his political inclinations and that is something that is disturbingly blatant for a viewer to see in a credible political analyst that Yadav claims himself to be.

Finally, congratulations to Mr. Modi. He is certainly the man of the moment.

Monday, December 10, 2007


Siri, tagged me. Infact she didn't. She merely asked whether I could take the tag, with which she was tagged, forward.

This 'tagging' business, to be honest, appears very childish. I tag somebody. The said somebody has to write, as a consequence, things like,
5 things I would do if I had born fifty years later OR
5 things I would do to succeed in pet keeping OR
5 things I would avoid eating after lunch on odd numbered days OR
to put it more generally,
'n' things I would/had/should/similar-meaning-word followed by random combination of English words.
Here n is an integer >= 5 and preferably a prime number.

You would also have to write a list of five things that you would not do or would not want to do. GuruWrites is giving a general format for that too. Here it is.
'n' things I would-not/had-not/should-not/similar-meaning-word followed by
random combination of English words
Here n is an integer >= 5 and preferably a prime number.

And the tribulations of the person tagged does not end here. He has to 'tag' someone else. And then the agony shifts to that person.

This being the case, it's hard for me accept the offer of carrying forward the tag. But being the nice person that I am, I shall give it a try.

Here goes the 5 things I think, I would want to do before turning 60

  • Have children
  • Retire
  • Become the nation's Prime Minister atleast twice.
  • Visit Azerbaijan atleast once
  • Bridge the gap between the dialectic and the didactic. Probably make a movie that achieves this task. (Arjun, sorry for shamelessly using your 'idea'.)
5 things I would not do shall not be listed for lack of enthusiasm to list the same.

And nominating the next tag-bearer is also a task I shall refrain from doing. If any of the zillions of readers of this blog want to take it up, they are free to do so.