Editorial

Claims of Good Governance are Suspect

AS we go to press, the current session of the parliament has been adjourned sine die. This first session held after the 16th general elections ended on the third day since it began with the customary rendition of the national song. This is probably the shortest parliament session in recent memory. The only agenda was the adoption of the customary motion of thanks to the president for his address to the joint session on the first day. The motion of thanks was moved in both the Houses on the second day and was adopted on the third day, thus ending the session.

OMINOUS SIGNALS

ADMITTEDLY it is too early to comment upon the functioning of the new government. The president of India, as is customary after every general elections, will address the joint session of the parliament after the newly-elected MPs are administered their `oath’ and the Lok Sabha elects its speaker. This address is scheduled only on Monday, June 9, 2014. In this speech, the president of India outlines the general blueprint of the work that `his’ government intends to do. This usually prioritises the government’s promises that will be undertaken/fulfilled during the first 100 days.

Double Whammy Attack

THAT the RSS/BJP speaks with a forked tongue has been well-established. This perfection of the practice of `double speak’ is designed to pursue a dual agenda. One that constitutes the pursuit of the RSS’s core agenda – sharpening communal polarisation – while pursuing another agenda for public consumption. That the RSS/BJP adopted such a dual agenda during its election campaign was articulated in these columns earlier.

Poll Reforms: Need of the Day

THE president of India has appointed Narendra Modi as the country’s 14th prime minister on the strength of his election as the leader of the BJP parliamentary group following the BJP’s electoral victory. The acceptance of the people’s verdict always comes with the expectations that the government that follows will pursue a set of policies and programmes that will provide the people with a better quality of life.

On the 16th General Election Results

A DETAILED analysis of the 16th general elections will have to necessarily wait for the final figures that will be released by the Election Commission shortly and after all major political parties conclude their internal assessments and analysis. The CPI(M)’s Polit Bureau is meeting on May 18 for a preliminary review and its Central Committee will meet on June 7 and 8 by when the respective state committees would have conducted their preliminary reviews. However, it is clear by the time this column is filed that the BJP is marching towards scoring a single party majority in the Lok Sabha.

People’s Wave Seeking Relief

AS we go to press, the penultimate eighth phase of this marathon nine-phase general election has been completed. Though only one phase is left, this would be a decisive phase in certain states like West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh. While the polls have, by and large, not been marred by large-scale violence and terror, there have been notable exceptions. During the last phase, the third phase in West Bengal, large-scale reports of terror intimidation and booth capturing by the ruling party in the state, Trinamool Congress, have been reported.

BJP Baring its Communal Fangs

AS we go to the press, the seventh phase of the 16th general elections has been completed out of this marathon nine-phase election. This phase has been marked by widespread violence, terror and rigging indulged by the ruling Trinamool Congress in West Bengal. Complaints in this regard have been registered with the Election Commission with the demands for a re-poll under the proper supervision and scrutiny of the central forces. We shall have to wait for the Election Commission to take the appropriate decisions.

BJP Manifesto: A Characteristic Double-Speak

THE BJP has, finally, released its manifesto for the 16th general elections. Its release, however reluctantly, is motivated by a public outcry that a party, which according to India Inc and its corporate media drum-beaters, has all but won the election to form the next government, has not spelt out its roadmap on how it shall steer the country’s future. It is unprecedented that its manifesto should be released after the polling process has actually begun. In the record of India's electoral history, one cannot recall, such an instance.

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