The corporate-communal nexus has become so powerful in these elections that they are trampling the democracy with the right boot of their money power and the left boot of communal hatred.
By Dr Javed Jamil
A few days remain before the first vote is caste for the Election 2014. The whole process will take about 7 weeks. If the latest spate of attempts to polarize the elections is any indication of the days to come, these 7 weeks can signal horror. BJP is making last ditch effort to see its long planned strategy to come to power and install its champion proponent of Hindutva Narendra Modi as Prime Minister of the country to fruition. Modi’s most trusted lieutenant is playing his game with perfection. His form is never in doubt; and if he gets the perfect UP pitch to bat on, fours and sixes of communalism will flow in quick succession. Vasundharas and Uma Bhartis are in no short supply in the Parivar. Whenever polarization occurs anywhere, it is the minority that suffers most. Muslims are watching with dreaded silence. They cannot run away from the elections. They do not have any party they can vote for happily considering it their own. They have no option but to choose from among those who are relatively less dangerous for them.
The corporate-communal nexus has become so powerful in these elections that they are trampling the democracy with the right boot of their money power and the left boot of communal hatred. Congress has abysmally failed to counter this double attack. The party appears to be fighting for survival. The nexus has run such an orchestrated and high-pitched campaign that every other party looks clueless. AAP has almost been destroyed through systematic onslaught of falsehood. Its tally will not perhaps touch the double digit figure.
The nexus seems to be already celebrating. But they must know that the celebrations may still prove to be premature. They are relying too much on the opinion polls and the crowds in Modi’s rallies. They need to know that there are much bigger number of Indians than those who attend his rallies or answer the questions in the opinion polls. They must also know that not only Muslims but also the majority of Hindus are inherently secular. Though apparently Hindu psyche has been bombarded with an endless propaganda, there are still many who will refuse to be carried away. The combined strength of Hindus and Muslims will hopefully turn the tide against the opponents.
Muslims will end as losers whatever the outcome of the elections. If BJP fails to come to power, they will have some satisfaction. But this will embolden the “secular” parties further in thinking that Muslims donate their votes just in return of a guarantee that these parties will not do what they fear from BJP. There will be hardly any efforts to raise their level of income, their participation in democratic institutions and their living standards. If BJP wins, Muslims will be running in constant fear of not only a big nationwide riot (that can ensure BJP power for a long period) but also of being further hit under the belly through steps like ban on meat exports, further shutdown of already shutting small scale industries and further erosion of their presence in democratic institutions. There is a clear threat that their number in the next Lok Sabha may hit an all time low.
Hopefully, Muslims learn to become the real vote banks (and not the vote banks which they are often described as) not giving their votes in charity but in return of appreciable dividends. Hopefully, they will learn the art of bargaining sooner than later. Hopefully, they will understand that the participation in democracy does not simply mean casting votes but getting their genuine share in every field. Hopefully, they will learn the strategy of forming alliances with other vote banks on the basis of shared interests.
* Dr Javed Jamil is a thinker and writer with over a dozen books including his latest, “Muslims Most Civilised, Yet Not Enough” and “Muslim Vision of Secular India: Destination & Road-map”. Other works include “The Devil of Economic Fundamentalism”, “The Essence of the Divine Verses”, “The Killer Sex”, “Islam means Peace” and “Rediscovering the Universe”. He can be contacted at email@example.com or 91-8130340339. https://twitter.com/javedjamil