The Modi-Shah duo have been repeating the slogan ‘Congress Free India’ ad nauseam. And a whole lot of ‘liberal’, ‘progressive’, ‘democratic’ and suchlike tag-holders have been criticizing the duo for this. But as is the case with most of the complicated things in life, the critics are missing the point entirely.
One has to keep in mind that the slogan is not raised by some blood-thirsty warrior, but by a duo that comes from a state that has ‘business’ in its DNA.
The duo doesn’t want to destroy, eliminate, annihilate, extinguish or demolish Congress in any way. Those who interpret the slogan that way are missing the entire point.
From a ‘business’ perspective, the duo wants to ‘acquire’ congress. Acquire as in ‘mergers and acquisitions’ acquire.
Assam is the new state that BJP has added to its kitty. Would that have been possible without Himanta Biswa Sarma? Very unlikely. And if Congress is ‘eliminated’, who will provide further Biswa Sarmas?
In Maharashtra, it is spelt out much more clearly. Look at the MLC elections that are due. For Rajya Sabha elections, there are six nominees for six seats. No contest. But for MLC elections, there are twelve candidates for ten seats. And where are the extra candidates coming from? BJP has declared six candidates when it has votes enough for electing five. And the twelfth candidate? He is a ‘rebel’, from BJP. Such tactics were the hallmark of Congress (in Maharashtra, its derivative, NCP). Both Congress and NCP in Maharashtra meekly nominated candidates in proportion of their votes, with some votes to spare. And now they are watching with trepidation, as BJP is likely to poach on the extra votes as well as the ‘disgruntled’ elements from those two parties. Well, not just those two, even the Shiv Sena is jittery, without showing it on the outside.
And who are these ‘extra’ candidates? One is imported from NCP (Prasad Lad) and the other from MNS (Pravin Darekar). The 'rebel' is the leader of BJP in BMC (Manoj Kotak). How can one fail to see a copybook Congress tactic that is very effectively adopted by BJP? This is what ‘Congress Free India’ means.
If you want further proof, look at the way the Eknath Khadse imbroglio is shaping up. An incumbent minister buys land at a prime location at a throw-away price, and still keeps roaring about being innocent. If this is not a signature Congress act, then I am the King of Canada! Look at the way Khadse is still feigning innocence, organizing rallies to display his ‘strength’ and ‘popular support’; isn’t this following the great lesson laid down by Indira Gandhi in 1975, when she lost the case in Allahabad High Court?
So, it is not ‘extinction’ of Congress that the duo is aiming for; it is the ‘acquisition’ of the people closely followed by culture.
So, if anything is going on the path of extinction, it is the ‘old’ BJP, the ‘Party with a Difference’. The party has now decided to be different by eliminating the difference.