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Baba Ramdev starts on his fast; Congress speaks in 2 languages – diplomacy and Digvijay Singh




Ever since the Anna Hazare fast showed the Congress the amount of anger present in the masses over corruption, combined with the ongoing blasting that the Government receives over the CWG games and the 2G scam, there has been a worried feeling about the impact of mass agitations that get the population worked up and show the Government and the ruling party in a bad light. For a section of the population, the impression of corruption in the Government (distinct from the everyday corruption that happens when you deal with the police, and other Government departments) has grown spectacularly, and with the media being competitive in latching onto these allegations and trying to show more corruption among the higher levels of Government, the Congress and allies must be really feeling the heat.
Further, in the last few elections in state, the voters seem to have voted for those politicians who have done well in terms of showing an ability to do good government or the promise to do so (Nitish Kumar and Mamta Banerjee), and voted those out emphatically who were projected as only protecting their own interests and being corrupt (the biggest example being the ouster of Karunanidhi and the DMK in Tamil Nadu). This should lay low to the feeling that the Congress seems to have had that people forget about corruption or really don’t care about corruption in high places (the DMK tried to project that the people of Tamil Nadu will not understand the level of corruption involved in the 2G scam and the issues involved).

And there was the agitation by Anna Hazare (in the midst of the election campaign) about making sure that the Lokpal becomes an effective instrument against corruption rather than the weak crippled institution that the Government would like it to be. The Government dismissed the agitation, with regular comments by spokespersons and ministers, and with lots of media coverage that was also adverse in terms of calling some of these actions as ‘blackmail politics’, ‘subversion of democracy’, etc. However, this was a campaign that caught national attention with people joining the fast and the media supporting it fully. Within a couple of days, the Congress could see the pressure and got into panic mode (working out how to use their traditional methods of delaying and stalling tactics). Now, after some time, one can see that their tactics have worked; the members nominated by Anna Hazare are frustrated by the Government stalling and denying during the negotiations on the Lokpal Bill.
And then Baba Ramdev has got into the act. For many months, the Baba (an expert on selling Yoga to the masses) has been leading a campaign to stop corruption and bring back black money from outside (and this is the same issue on which the Supreme Court dins the Government for inaction and the Government takes the refuse that it is bound by limitations and treaties). He must have been discomfited by the sudden action of Anna Hazare in taking the anti-corruption stand and becoming a leading light, but he must have also calculated that the fear on behalf of the Government would actually help him.
The Baba is suspected of many other reasons for his actions – he is suspected of being a front man of the RSS (and by default, those of right-wing communalists), and he is suspected of doing this action as a part of his effort to become a political force and gain more public support. You even had the ridiculous site of movie stars expressing disapproval of the actions of the Baba (pretending that some artificial measures will come into stop corruption and make India a better society – one wonders whether Shahrukh Khan thought that making such controversial comments with the backdrop of his latest movie would cause some amount of publicity). My view is simple – if the Baba is acting as a front for the RSS and expresses views that will draw away his supporters, then we will see that soon enough. Just making slogans such as ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai’ does not make somebody a communal person. So far the Baba has been careful in getting people from all religions on the stage, although bringing on Sadhvi Rithambara on the stage can cause some raw nerves.
The Congress has unleashed the full force of Digvijay Singh on the Baba (the sight of Digvijay Singh speaking continually when the Congress has a gag order on its party members on this issue gives the game away). Now, we are witnessing the sight of Baba Ramdev replying to these allegations, and this can be interesting since Digvijay Singh would not have come across such a person (ask Brinda Karat who made allegations against Baba Ramdev and ended up having to face Laloo Prasad Yadav and Samajwadi Yadav).
Now, there are some things that seem a bit strange in what he is asking for, especially the punishment of death sentence for corruption (which goes the Supreme Court guidelines of death sentence for rare cases only), and the withdrawal of higher denomination notes (which he seems to have withdrawn for now), but his demands for greater action against people who hoard black money and increased effort for bringing back black money are very justified (these were the very same demands made by the Supreme Court). Further, stricter laws against corruption are also part of his demands, and you will not find anybody in the population who will oppose this demand. He has also learnt from the Anna Hazare case, where he demands action from the Government rather than just some statements (and this is where the Government seems to have been caught up in its own reputation for delaying or postponing action). One needs to see where this will go ahead, but any pressure on the Government through such actions is always welcome. He seems to have made that clear, and in the interaction with the press, the statements that he made were non-controversial and made himself out to be reasonable). A few more days of this will scare the Government to no end, especially if the agitation picks up legs. In both cases, the people have told the Government in advance as to what they plan to do, but the Government only gets into action when the issue is facing it in the face, and in this case, they tried their best to modify Baba Ramdev through interactions with senior ministers.




3 comments to Baba Ramdev starts on his fast; Congress speaks in 2 languages – diplomacy and Digvijay Singh

  • Very strange update – the Congress hits back at Ramdev saying that he has agreed to call off his fast, while the Government has really agreed to nothing more than set up committees to investigate (which is the normal way to delay a decision, based on the previous strategies used by the Government). Now, Ramdev says that he will continue, and will not speak to the Govt anymore on the phone.

  • Madan Mohan

    Dear friends!!!
    The present congress govt has acted has as British rulers who had brutally acted with satyagrahis kie gandhi ji and now if we see a chance to overcome and a satyagrahi stands .He is cheated by the ministers.What paly is cogress playing with its own people..What has been done yesterday night at Ramlila Maidan with Ramdev and supporters is strong indication that in the name of peace and order in national capital Delhi, the Sataygrahis were brutally beated and Ramdev was beaten and arrested. This could be done easily in Delhi as Delhi is ruled by congress govt.
    There has been no mistake by police and administration as they clearly say that this was a political order and they just obeyed tis order of congress govt.
    Is this the congress govt who acted actively in Satyagrah and now in the name of peace and order beating men, women and person like ramdev who stood for a good cause. Even the arrest was made in the night on Saturday as the next day was Sunday and that no court Suo-Motto action could be taken by ay court.
    We are ruled by most corrupt govt now and we have to believe this.
    But the war continues and we will not become back as when Shakti grows there is protest agaist it. They are fighting for truth and we should help them. If we think that he alone can overcome this corruption problem, this is not possible and if id not support at this time we will be the victims in coming future. Get together with Satyagrah
    Madan Mohan Pandey
    Advocate,Delhi High Court

  • Madan Mohan

    Dear friends!!!
    The present congress govt has acted has as British rulers who had brutally acted with satyagrahis kie gandhi ji and now if we see a chance to overcome and a satyagrahi stands .He is cheated by the ministers.What paly is cogress playing with its own people..What has been done yesterday night at Ramlila Maidan with Ramdev and supporters is strong indication that in the name of peace and order in national capital Delhi, the Sataygrahis were brutally beated and Ramdev was beaten and arrested. This could be done easily in Delhi as Delhi is ruled by congress govt.
    There has been no mistake by police and administration as they clearly say that this was a political order and they just obeyed tis order of congress govt.
    Is this the congress govt who acted actively in Satyagrah and now in the name of peace and order beating men, women and person like ramdev who stood for a good cause. Even the arrest was made in the night on Saturday as the next day was Sunday and that no court Suo-Motto action could be taken by ay court.
    We are ruled by most corrupt govt now and we have to believe this.
    But the war continues and we will not become back as when Shakti grows there is protest agaist it. They are fighting for truth and we should help them. If we think that he alone can overcome this corruption problem, this is not possible and if id not support at this time we will be the victims in coming future. Get together with Satyagrah
    Madan Mohan Pandey
    Advocate,DHC

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