Election time, they say, is the true test of any government’s credibility!
If the politics being played out by various outfits in Goa with an eye on the two Lok Sabha seats and the by-polls to the three Assembly segments is anything to go by, the eccentricities that characterize the campaigning by various ensembles across the country equally match the tiny state for the awfulness of the oddities.
No doubt such charades ‘enliven’ election proceedings in India, with the apparently amused public regaling itself in the insincerity of the whole tamasha.
After the Rafale deal which gave the Modi-dispensation sleepless nights, the BJP will now have to pray for something else to crop up so as to perk up public inquisitiveness and divert the minds of people from the intricacies that described the acquisition.
And as the nation gets ready for the Battle royal, the grand performances put up by various dispensations in the run-up to the elections pale in comparison to the tall claims put forth by the government of the day which does not tire of patting its own back for every feat that brings kudos to the agencies involved.
Claiming credit for the surgical strikes carried out by the armed forces of the country on terrorist bases in PoK which has led to the isolation of Pakistan, the NDA-government has been profuse in its praises for PM Narendra Modi under whose leadership the country, the BJP and its allies assert, has scaled new heights.
The five-years of Modi-sarkar has been touted as that golden-era of Indian history where the ‘pluses’ have so overwhelmingly scored over the ‘minuses’ to put the country on a new roadmap to sustainable development and an inclusive high-growth future.
Modi-enthusiasts, ebullient about their leader’s larger-than-life presence in today’s political landscape, compliment the PM for his style of functioning which they affirm is the sole reason for the better governance in evidence.
The slew of economic reforms ushered in and the better governance that has become the order of the day are claimed to be natural corollaries to the initiative.
Fervent pleas going out to the public, acknowledging the contributions of Modi towards the making of a New-India hence feature as an essential aspect of the poll-campaign for BJP this once.
Placing its achievements of the last five years in the public domain to get the nod from the masses for another term in office, at times though the few ’breakthroughs’ the government claim to have made with matters relating to ‘national interest’ are indeed baffling!
The impotency of the government when it comes to apprehending fugitives from justice and trying them in our courts of law has quite often resulted in high-profile fraudsters taking refuge in foreign countries and thumbing their noses at a seemingly ineffective judicial system.
Fast gaining notoriety as a nation that cannot bring to book criminals who dare dupe the establishment in their own ingenious ways, India has indeed been cutting a sorry figure among the international community.
But it becomes all the more infuriating to know that in spite of the ‘evidences’ which suggest political complicity, it is usually the investigative skills and policing methods of our law-enforcement agencies which come in for sharp criticism.
For that matter, even the press and media, after lengthy investigations into the scam which manage to capture the attention of the entire nation, are guilty of unceremoniously dropping it from their editions after some time.
Attempts made by Indian authorities to have the felons extradited failing to evoke any sincere efforts from the governments concerned, the masses are left to draw their own conclusions on the matter.
Meanwhile, the fraudsters continue to make their prolific presence felt, albeit in foreign lands, assured of their immunity from criminal arrest and prosecution in India.
But no sooner are elections announced here in India, it is not unusual to have a rejuvenated police force in these ‘safe havens’ announcing with great élan the arrest of the county’s most ‘wanted’ culprit and making the necessary arrangements to deport the arraigned.
The arrest of the fugitive diamantaire Nirav Modi in London by the Scotland Yard ostensibly follows the ‘perceived’ pattern!
A case that was apparently heading in no direction with the principal accused in the multi-billion PNB rip-off evading arrest at every juncture, it becomes more than obvious that Nirav Modi’s arrest will now be touted as another great ‘achievement’ by the Modi-sarkar in its quest for another stint in power!
But the question that remains uppermost in one’s mind is about the comparative ease with which high-profile scamsters continue to be seen here-there-and-everywhere and yet the government of the day expresses its inability to apprehend them as it has to deal with the rigmaroles of handling the complexities of international diplomacy.
Is our government so helpless that it has to be bogged down by the ‘limitations of boundaries’ which prevents it from pursuing such cases with extreme vigour while at the same time, throwing all caution to the winds, it has never shirked from making a case of terrorist attacks on its soil by Pakistani militants and dealing with the menace with a panache that hasn’t stopped surprising a global audience!
Nevertheless, the delayed response to addressing rip-offs orchestrated by criminal elements causing huge losses and also a loss of face to the country is indeed perplexing considering the resources the government has at its disposal to bring such unsavoury characters to book.
Ergo the feeling that such ‘conspirators’ enjoy the political blessings of the bigwigs in the government which give them the immunity from arrest and harassment!
Envisioning a corruption-free India, is Narendra Modi’s promises of achche din ahead encouraging him to become a ‘chowkidar’ to safe-guard the nation against the evil designs of fraudsters and scamsters?
Or does it imply that while the thieves loot and flee the country, as protectors of the rich, the ‘Chowkidar’ will shield the criminal scoundrels from the wrath of the nation!
Meanwhile, BJP’s ‘Main Bhi Chowkidar’ campaign has become a thumping success on social media platforms while the Congress’ ‘Chowkidar Chor Hai’ countercampaign has failed to elicit any response so far.
Just as viral-infections which are causing health-scares across the country, the poll-fever that has gripped the nation promises to plunge the country further into bouts of despair with people realizing that such slogans being used extensively by political parties will hardly ‘outlive’ the elections.(Published on 15th April 2019, Volume XXXI, Issue 16)