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Digvijay Singh – his utterances as part of a specific political agenda ?




Digvijay Singh was, at one time, a powerful regional chieftain of the Congress, being the Chief Minister of the state of Madhya Pradesh when the Congress was ruling. However, it has now been some time now since he was in a position of direct power, not being a Cabinet minister either. However, he remains a powerful person within the Congress, due to being seen as somebody close to Rahul Gandhi (being seen as the mentor to the young Gandhi), and also being a General Secretary of the Congress. He is also seen as somebody loyal to the Congress, and also loyal to the Gandhi family.
The Congress knows that it has lost a number of its support base, such as the Dalits, the Muslims, and the poor (the Congress knows that the vote of the urban population is fickle, while the original support base of the poor-dailt-muslim was a powerful combination). Further, the Congress has lost huge amounts of support in North India, primarily in the populous state of Uttar Pradesh. To this extent, Rahul Gandhi has been shunning the cities, criss-crossing the country, espousing the cause of the poor, the dispossessed, staying in the house of Dalits (and scaring Mayawati who will not have a leg to stand on if the Congress starts to get back the support of the Dalits).

It is in the Muslim vote that the Congress is having the most problem. The Congress is the governing party of the country, and needs to implement whatever policies are required for the security of the country and to ensure law and order, and attacking terrorism. Unfortunately for the Congress, what is true right now is that a number of Islam inspired terrorists (if we leave aside some other such as ULFA, etc) are the prime targets of the security forces, and any slackening in such efforts can only backfire on the Congress. As a result, when the security forces take action against these terrorists, it is seen as an attack on Muslim interests, and can push them away further from the Congress.
And this is where Digvijay Singh can step in, by announcing that there is a section of the Congress that empathizes with the Muslims, and visiting regions from where the killed terrorists of the IM belonged to, such as Azamgarh in Uttar Pradesh. When Digvijay Singh would make such comments, there was a huge outcry, which resulted in him being further projected as a sympathizer of Muslims (and since he was close to the Gandhi family, there was never any criticism from them of his actions, although it was permitted for other Congress members to do criticism of his; he was never removed from being General Secretary for these utterances).
And because for some time now there has been no controversy, it was time for Mr. Singh to make another statement, one in which he sought to implicate Hindu terrorists in the murder of the ATS chief Hemant Karkare in the Mumbai attacks in 2008. It was only the fierce criticism by the widow of the slain ATS chief that caused the Congress to back away from him; but one can be sure that he will continue to make such statements (especially since there are actually Hindu terrorists who have been caught) since this is seen as a rewarding strategy for the Congress.




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