Uneventful Dance of Democracy

The Maharashtra khichdi isn’t cooked yet. That the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance is unable to form Government though they have won a full majority suggests that BJP is able to form a Government only if it doesn’t win an absolute majority, and only if it needs to lure, buy, threaten, investigate, jail, poach, kidnap MLAs. Remember all the States such as Goa, Karnataka, Manipur et al?

BJP Shiv Sena
If the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance cannot work together what else in the world will? People will lose faith in the institution of marriage! They were made-for-each-other, they were soulmates, their match was made in heaven, they would be expected to live together another seven-lives, seven incarnations. Alas Man disposes what God proposes. Such is the power of the Shah-Modi duo.
The Shiv Sena and BJP have been together through good times and bad, through the thick and the thin, toiling untiringly for the cause of Hindu Rashtra, Hindutva, They’ve been together in riot, violence and arson, demolishing mosques, teaching muslims a lesson! To hell with Constitution, secularism, Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam. It would be nearly impossible to say whether divorce from each other after such infatuation would be more painful or divorce from power, should it come to that pass.
Shiv Sena may have to settle for an arranged marriage with the NCP and Congress. It is difficult to say what their view on traditional Indian values, our rich culture and heritage, monogamy etc. is but in Maharashtra’s interest they may even settle for polygamy.
The only small difference between two individuals marrying and two political parties marrying is that one discusses alimony, partition of property only if the marriage breaks down. Where parties marry one thrashes out property share, alimony, palimony etc. in the run up to the wedding, for the wedding.
Power is absolutely essential for the survival and growth of any political party. In any case the Shah-Modi dispensation had reduced the Shiv Sena to the same condition as India’s former princely states (after the British left India), beneficiaries of privy purse, political pensioners! Indeed, a free hand in Mumbai Municipal Corporation is like privy purse or permanent pension scheme.
Shiv Sena hasn’t run out of options. In fact, some Shiv Sainiks must really feel spoiled for choice. Like the past 5 years they can be both in Government and behave like opposition, constantly sniping, snubbing and then put the tiger’s tail between its legs come election time; or the party can be in Government and the party mouthpiece Saamna can be the opposition. That way nobody will know who is on which side. Indeed, one of the ways to make marriage work is to live under the same roof and spite each other. That’s a trick marriage counsellors and authors of books on how-to-make-relationship-work may never have thought of.
The BJP hasn’t run out of options either. Coaxing, cajoling, putting Income Tax authorities, Enforcement Directorate after anybody who doesn’t fall in line are perfectly legitimate tools. If these don’t work there are, of course, non-State players such as Bajrang Dal, Hindu Sena, Hindu Vahini et al who would do anything befitting their rich tradition and culture. There might just be a small problem there, because the Shiv Sena too might have its own outfits and armies that can bring a rowdy street under control!
Perhaps BJP can requisition Mr Gopal Kanda’s services for Maharashtra since he wasn’t used in Haryana. Then there’s also the option of giving Maharashtra Delhi-like status, i.e., give them a Government with no more powers than a Municipal Corporation and have the police and all the agencies-with-sting under its thumb; or use something like 370 (in case Shiv Sena cosies up to Sharad Pawar’s hospitality. The only difference for the Delhi duo would be using their remote control on Governor or Lieutenant Governor instead of Chief Minister. In no case need power be surrendered.
Because it has been a very dignified quarrel thus far none of the political parties have had to use hotels, holiday resorts, burly boxers, aircraft, AC buses transporting MLAs to safe havens. But that’s a great loss to India’s stuttering economy and GDP. Poor resort owners are losing their only chance to make a little buck in this festive season.
A pretty uneventful dance of democracy, this.




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