Karnataka Opens ‘Mohabbat Ki Dukaan’
Obviously, Bajrang Bali has been deeply offended, despite the 26-km-long road show held by a desperate PM, staring at inevitable defeat in Karnataka. Even the Jai Bajrang Bali slogans did not seem to appease the good-old Monkey God, who carries Sita and Ram inside his chest like a classical Raja Ravi Verma painting, while always celebrating Jai Siya Ram as greeting and salutation.
Besides, the muscular Jai Shri Ram slogan by Hindutva fanatics is a misnomer; in the entire Hindi heartland, it is Sita, Siya, who precedes Ram! In the same manner that in the Brajbhumi of Mathura and Vrindavan, the first greeting is always Radhey-Radhey, while Krishna plays his melodious flute in the background.
In their desperate up enthusiasm, they made the same mistake in Bengal, which worships the female Shakti, Jai Kali Kalkatte Wali, and Bolo Durga Mai ki Jai, apart from, the profound and liberating synthesis of Ramakrishna Paramhans and Vivekananda, Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, Lallan Fakir and Geeta Govinda; and great renaissance and reform icons like Ishwar Chand Vidyasagar, Raja Rammohan Roy and Michael Madhusudan Dutt. Jai Shri Ram was a box-office disaster in entire Bengal, even while the two Gujarati politicians, landing ritualistically on helicopters with the hyperbole of muscle and money, obsessed with their totalitarian power, totally lost the plot.
In a spoofy irony, the PM tried to reincarnate himself yet again into a white-bearded Rabindranath Tagore – which was taken with a certain sense of wry amusement by the Bengali intelligentsia and the masses, much as they love Tagore for his dislike of sectarian nationalism, and pluralist globalism. Besides, Bengal has watched with intense anxiety the destruction of the prestigious Viswabharati University at Santiniketan in Bolpur (like JNU), while a highly respected Amartya Sen has been hounded with a vicious and relentless zeal by the VC, whose sole claim to fame is that he is a BJP loyalist.
Bajrang Bali, clearly, hated being used as a cheap electoral bait, even while the 40 per cent commission slogan became viral across the landscape, including coastal Karnataka, another Hindutva lab, where, reportedly, the BJP did not do as well. The rest of Karnataka has therefore voted against the Naftrat ka Bazaar, and ushered in the Mohabbat ki Dukaan, while looking at Rajasthan where the Congress government has reduced gas cylinder prices to ₹500, and accepting the pledge of Rahul Gandhi that in the first cabinet meeting itself the five guarantees for women, the poor and ordinary folks, and the educated young will be fulfilled. No wonder, the margins have voted overwhelmingly for the Congress, defying the domination of the dominant castes.
The minister who banned Hijab in schools has lost. Not only that, a Muslim schoolgirl has topped the Board exams in Karnataka. The educated young, especially women, and the masses of Karnataka, almost always extremely decent, polite and soft-spoken, believed in Rahul Gandhi, in his quintessential white T-shirt and loose trousers, as he interacted with admiring female students and working women inside buses and bus stops in Bangalore. While the BJP did the usual, with the PM literally parking himself out there (despite Manipur burning with more than 60 dead), using the propaganda props of a polarizing Kerala Story which did not sell or jell, using Hanuman with such opportunist frenzy, falsely castigating Sonia Gandhi and branding her a secessionist — all their jaded, faded, time-tested ploys collapsed like a pack of feku cards.
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Only the joker could be seen flashing his spoofy smile – because the joke is finally on Modi, and it is a dark joke, with prophecies of a dark future, enclosing the darkest narratives of infinite injustice, inhumanity and indecency witnessed by India in the ‘acche din’ since May 2014!
Earlier, Rahul Gandhi’s 22-day long march through the hinterland of the state during the fantastically successful Bharat Jodo Yatra had created an unprecedented wave of anticipation, with great admiration for the young, humble and open-ended leader, who endeared to every heart by hugging them, walking with them hand-in-hand, and, most crucially, listening to them, with intense intent, and with a certain depth of seriousness not seen among politicians in recent times. Especially, in the current scenario, where authoritarian arrogance, disregard for civilized discourse and conduct, and total disdain for constitutional and democratic propriety, has been displayed so brazenly for the world to see.
Clearly, as a social media post said, they chucked him quickly out of his MP bungalow in Delhi, and the entire Karnataka opened the doors of their hearts and homes for Rahul Gandhi! Did the BJP pay a heavy price for yet another desperate act by removing him from Parliament on a flimsy charge? Yes, and as has been widely perceived, they have paid a heavy price in Karnataka, and they will inevitably pay a heavy price in all the other states in the days to come, as Rahul Gandhi has said in as many words in his first press interaction after the verdict.
Indeed, so why did the BJP top brass, never shy of a cacophonous chorus, suddenly becomes so cocooned, ostrich-like, in their singular soliloquy? Indeed, as former PM, HD Deve Gowda, said, that assembly polls are fought on local issues, and here is a PM fighting as if it is 2024! He is obviously right. The defeat in Karnataka is a transparent sign that it’s a bleak, bleak scenario waiting for the PM and his one-man party in the days to come, even as four more states go to the polls now, and even as the PM seems eternally on an election mode, despite the myth that he works 24/7 and never ever sleeps.
Sleep or insomnia, the farce is certainly going to be followed by a nightmare. Immorality is surely commonplace, despite the lofty promise of Na Khaoonga, Na Khane Doonga, but, immortality, too, is commonplace, as great poet Jorge Luis Borges wrote. From here to eternity, there seems no light in this dingy, narcissist tunnel for the fake messiah, and the clean sweep of the Congress, plus the resounding drubbing of the BJP, is the latest, prophetic, writing on the wall.
With the South now BJP-mukt, and fortunately so, and Punjab, Bengal, Rajasthan, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, outside its grasp, even while they broke the Congress to make a government in Madhya Pradesh, all they are now left is the original hate lab of Gujarat, and the newest hate lab in a backward UP, where the vicious politics of caste and communalism still rules supreme. There is no hope from Akhilesh Yadav or Mayawati, and the Gujarat Congress is in shambles; hence, the BJP will call the shots there.
However, in the rest of the country, the monologue of a boring Mann Ki Baat is not working. Witness, among others, nurses in Chandigarh missing the hyped-up 100th anniversary programme on radio, despite strict instructions. Consequently, they have been punished – even as the International Nurses Day was celebrated all across the world as a tribute to their dedicated devotion and selfless hard work. So why are the nurses compelled to hear this or that show? If this is not a sign of compulsory adulation for a dictator, then what is it?
The answer, as the song says, is blowing in the wind! It is blowing at Jantar Mantar in Delhi with our valiant world champion women wrestlers’ dogged struggle against a history-sheeter bahubali who is shamefully backed by the PM and his one-dimensional regime. With Adani still in doldrums, and with Mukesh Ambani apparently missing from the scene, and despite its deep pockets, their humiliating defeat in Karnataka is an abject sign that their acche din is all but over.
The Opposition has sensed it as well. Mamata Banerjee has hit the nail hard by promptly declaring that it is the end of the road for the BJP. Besides, given the fact the party has become a one-man show, the BJP, as a party, too, might find the ground slipping from beneath its feet with the fall and fall of Narendra Modi. In that case, it might end up as a picture in contrast, and a pleasing, picturesque picture I must say — finally, and at last, a BJP-mukt, secular, pluralist, democratic Bharat!
Read More: lokmarg.com
As always you are a harbinger of hope. I’m also celebrating. Enjoying the endless memes. Nevertheless, I have a concern and that is with 2024. Modi is testing waters. He is checking strategy. If he were to lose the next three elections I fear violence on the streets, manipulation of the EVMs and more Pulwama like organised events.