Verdict 2014: Awakening of Bharat’s Kundalini
by Virendra Parekh on 17 May 2014 7 Comments

The nation has spoken. And how! Election 2014 will go down as a watershed in India’s history. It marks the awakening of Bharatavarsh’s Kundalini. This ancient nation is casting off its stupor, as it were, and rising to regain its lost glory. As in the case of yogic sadhana, the path ahead is anything but smooth; it is strewn with thorns, pitfalls and alluring distractions. However, the awakened life-force (Pranashakti) can overcome it all.


We can expect not just transfer of power, but transformation of the State. The election verdict marks the first decisive step towards dismantling of the Nehruvian political order that has dominated our public life since Independence. Its consequences will keep unfolding for months, years and decades. While its immediate effects will be felt in the economy and politics, the more lasting changes will be felt in the social realm. The perceptions, relations and power equations among castes - forward, backward and SCs - and between Hindus and non-Hindus will change materially and we shall see a more cohesive and integrated society.


The emergence of Narendra Modi as a colossus on the national scene is the first takeaway of this election. He has conquered through fierce fight every inch of the political space he occupies. He has displayed extraordinary sense of purpose, determination, stamina and political acumen. In a long and arduous campaign that took him to every corner of the country, he established a rapport with every section of society.


Narendra Modi symbolises change with a capital C. He stands for everything that the establishment detests and abhors. He is a Hindu, a nationalist and is neither ashamed nor afraid of acknowledging it. His modest family background endears him to the masses even as it puts off the likes of Salman Khurshid and Mani Shankar Aiyar. Unlike Vajpayee and Advani, he is not craving for respectability among sworn enemies of Hinduism by bending to win their approval. His style is not to confront the adversary, but make him irrelevant. He is incorruptible; he suffers no fools, tolerates no non-sense and can call a spade a bloody shovel.


Among the courtiers of the Delhi Durbar, strongly interlinked by favours received and returned, Modi is the ultimate outsider. He is not beholden to anyone for any favours, and is likely to play with a straight bat in dealing with ‘practical’ people used to bend rules, bypass laws and manipulate others to have their way. In short, Modi is the Man of the Hour for a country yearning for change.


Secondly, the political dynasty founded by Motilal Nehru is facing terminal and irreversible decline. The halo around Sonia Gandhi has given way to dark clouds of suspicion. Both her children have been shown up for what they are: semi-literate, arrogant, ignorant brats. All three suffer from an entitlement syndrome and have nothing to offer the people except empty pro-poor rhetoric and fairy tales of family ‘sacrifices’. Priyanka Vadra blindly apes Indira Gandhi in her style and mannerisms, without realizing that Indira has become an anachronism today. Also, the stupid and gullible Indian villagers have become smarter now; the young generation has no patience with non-performing dynasties.


Thirdly, this is a vote for political stability. Unaligned regional satraps from J&K to West Bengal, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu were salivating at the prospect of milking the new Government in return for their support. They are left high and dry, for their services will not be needed. Even NDA allies will not able to pressurise Modi as they did Vajpayee. Modi is no ‘accidental’ Prime Minister, and BJP has numbers to act independently of its allies. The decimation of the Leftist parties is in itself a cause for celebration.


Last, but not the least, the secular-communal divide artificially created to isolate the BJP and garner Muslim votes will become irrelevant. Modi has broken the power of Muslim vote – or veto – by demonstrating the power of the Hindu vote. He has shown that a Hindu leader can come to power without wooing Muslims as Muslims, provided he wins over enough numbers of Hindus.


This should be no reason for Muslims to panic. For decades, secularist parties have scared Muslims into voting for them by conjuring up terrifying scenarios in case BJP ever came to power. Muslims cooperated in this con game because it enabled them to exercise political influence far disproportionate to their numbers. They acquired a veto on certifying who was secular and “fit and proper” to rule the country. That trick was tried this time too.


Modi’s response to this scaremongering was benign neglect, studied indifference. He refused to court Muslims as Muslims. He steadfastly refused to single out castes, communities and religious groups in his addresses. Instead, he sought support of all 125 crore Indians including Muslims for growth and development that will benefit all Indians, including Muslims. He made no specific promises nor held out any threat to any community. Elsewhere in the world, this conscious refusal to appease religious groups for political support would be regarded as secularism. In India, it is proof of communalism! That should tell non-Indians something about what passes for secularism in this country.


Modi succeeded because Hindus who are (genuinely) secular by nature trusted him and decided to give him a chance. Modi’s strategy offers a refreshing contrast to Vajpayee and Advani. Both went out of their way to woo Muslims to win acceptability in the secular establishment. Modi made secularists’ certificates irrelevant.


He dealt with casteism in a similar manner, by promising policies and measures that will benefit all, cutting across caste lines. His record in Gujarat clinched the issue. Naturally, he was reviled by leaders who have made careers and fortunes by dividing people on caste and communal lines. His glorious success inspires the hope that the divisive politics of caste and community will soon become irrelevant.


The top priority of the new government would be the economy. Modi fought the election on the twin planks of change and development. He promised change from the corrupt, insensitive and incompetent regime unleashed by the UPA.


But it is not a purely negative vote. The verdict is for development: for faster growth, creation of jobs, control of inflation. The new government will have its hands full. The UPA has metaphorically handed it a house on fire. Nor should it expect any comfort from the enemies - local or foreign. As Radha Rajan pointed out in these columns, communal riots, student unrest, insurgencies, disruptive AAP-like movements, jihadi terror attacks, tensions along national borders, bringing the national currency under tremendous pressure - everything will be tried to distract and derail Modi.


But then this election has released positive energies of a giant nation. Mr Modi has the backing of all right thinking Indians. The stock market has shown that investors are willing to put their money where their mouth is. A vast array of technocrats is willing to offer their expertise to tackle knotty problems. The young generation is raring to make its mark. It is the dawn that has come, as it must after every dark night. May 16, 2014 will be remembered as the second Independence Day.    

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