If Congress and BJP are two sides of the same coin, the same is true of Modi and Kejriwal.
Dr. Prem Singh
It is unfortunate that some individuals and organizations from the civil society are endorsing AAP supremo Arvind Kejriwal in Varanasi in the name of secularism. Recently the ‘anti-Modi’ political party, Janata Dal (U), has also declared its support for him. However, the party soon reviewed its decision saying that president Sharad Yadav and Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar will not be able to spare time for Varanasi from their busy schedule. It is absolutely clear that the support for Arvind Kejriwal in Varanasi is actually support for Narendra Modi. Through any sort of support for Kejriwal, not only does Modi stand to gain directly in the election but the nexus of neo-liberal and communal forces will also get a shot in the arm. Corporate capitalism, after subjecting Congress to full use, has now decided to make Narendra Modi a pawn to further its agenda. Along with Modi, the corporate houses are propping up Kejriwal in order to wipe out the anti-corporate movements/forces in the country.
If Congress and BJP are two sides of the same coin, the same is true of Modi and Kejriwal. Both are committed servants of corporate capitalism. The ideology of RSS has never had any conflict with corporate interests. Kejriwal, an NGO champion, has direct association with corporate capitalism. He has been doing ‘social service’ through NGOs for a long time, using foreign funds. But he has never criticized; leave alone oppose, the communal incidents such as the 1984 anti-Sikh riots, the Babri Masjid demolition in 1992, the state-sponsored genocide of Muslims in Gujrat in 2002, attacks on Christian in Orissa or even the more recent riots in Muzaffarnagar and Shamli districts of Uttar Pradesh where more than 60 people were killed and 60,000 people uprooted from 185 villages.
Prashant Bhushan, projected as secular leader from AAP, advocated the formation of a government with the support of the BJP instead of the Congress in Delhi. He has also made the ‘grand comment’ calling the CPM corrupt. Yogendra Yadav, another secular leader of AAP, has termed the CPM as opportunist. They refused to make an alliance even with Samajwadi Jan Parishad (SJP). Kejriwal himself has ridiculed the idea of a third front on several occasions with which an alliance cannot be made. The point I would like to make is that a neo-liberal person or party can never be truly secular.
The ‘truth’ about Gujrat’s development, upon which Kejriwal has based his criticism against Modi, has been enumerated time and again by several scholars and activists. The RSS was very much involved in the making of India Against Corruption (IAC) and the anti-corruption movement held under its aegis. Kejriwal’s guru Anna Hazare had first heaped praise on Modi. ‘Holymen’ like Ramdev and Sree Sree Ravishankar have been his counterparts. Furthermore, Kejriwal is emulating the same mish-mash of religion and politics that Modi is practicing in Varanasi.
If, despite all this, certain secularists are proclaiming him as their leader, it is because they need a new leader to protect their class interests just like Congress has done till today. The social and economic elite do not like the parties or the leaders of what is considered to be the third force in Indian politics. Some of them do wish for the communist parties to come to power, however they see no real possibility of it; but neither do they want to work towards a communist revolution. They merely want to be in control of various institutions as they were earlier. Kejriwal, therefore, is the new political hero of the self-seeking middle class.