Is the Opposition Creating a Banana Republic?

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The Opposition is up against the government for the alleged misuse of the government institutions. It is a case of the pot calling the kettle black, says Vijayhardik. A Different Truths exclusive.

The grouse of the Opposition against the government is the alleged misuse of the government institutions. It is a case of the pot calling the kettle black. This insidious agenda began in the aftermath of the loss of the opposition parties in the Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls.

The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) headed by Mayawati, considered a political heavy weight in the state, put in an abysmal performance reaching a low of 19 seats out a total of 403. Unable to digest the humiliating loss she raked up the issue of malfunctioning and tampering of the EVMs. This started the murky saga of the Opposition attacking and abusing public institutions.

It began with the Election Commission of India targeting the institution over the malfunctioning and hacking of EVMs. Today, they are throwing muck at every institution possible. Even the Supreme Court was not spared. The consequences of the muck raking have found the CBI amid a raging inferno.

Let us look at the hypocrisy and ire of Opposition parties against these hallowed institutions.

·         The Election Commission of India

This is an autonomous constitutional body responsible for the conduct of free and fair elections in India. It became a target for the main Opposition parties after their rout in the Uttar Pradesh elections in 2017 in the backdrop of the exercise of demonetisation.

Every election hence the EVM has become a constant source of controversy. The machine has borne the brunt of various rumours. Allegations have been levelled that the machines were fitted with WiFi connections to manipulate the votes; the other charge levelled against it is that the electronic chips were being replaced to change the count of votes. This became a habit where they cried foul about the EVMs being hacked at every consequent election.

This continued vilification of the Election Commission when electoral results do not go their way, while praising the same body when the electoral results are in their favour raises questions above their motives. The recent by-polls in Ramgarh and Jind reflect this hypocrisy of theirs.

 In Ramgarh, Rajasthan the representative of the Congress party won the poll. There not a squeak about faulty EVMs here. While in Jind, Haryana where the representative of the BJP was leading after eight rounds of counting protests broke out and stones were pelted. The bogey of the EVM was raised amid this ruckus. Paramilitary forces rushed in to get the situation under control.

While this was happening on the domestic front, a Congress backed EVM hackathon was being organised in London accusing the Election Commission of rigging the EVMs and casting aspersions on the legitimacy of the elected government of the day. Such allegations made on foreign soil sometimes undermine the operations of other constitutional bodies abroad and raise questions on their jurisprudence. This adversely effects the reputation of the government on the global platform.

·         The Central Bureau of Investigation

The investigating agencies have consistently been a target for the Opposition parties ever since the government began to crackdown on corruption. The constant allegation is that the government is misusing the CBI to crackdown on political opponents.

With Lalu Prasad Yadav, the former CM of Bihar being convicted in the fodder scam and leaders of other political parties either indicted or charge sheeted in various other scams; the aides of those leaders under judicial custody and names of top rung leaders of those political parties cropping up in investigations, the Opposition was feeling the heat.

When a businessman named Satish Sana accused a senior Telugu Desam Party (TDP) leader in connection with a money laundering case. In the light of this development, the government of Andhra Pradesh blocked the entry of the CBI in the state. Soon the government of West Bengal followed suit.

The consequences of this action were played out on the streets of Kolkata on Sunday night. The CBI investigating chit fund scams on the order of the Supreme Court landed in Kolkata to interrogate Commissioner of Police Rajeev Kumar but was shielded from facing interrogation. In return, Kolkata police detained the team of CBI sleuths, who were there to perform their duty.

Though under the purview of the law, what did the move achieve? All it did achieve is it undermines the federal structure of the nation. The irony is that these Opposition parties, which go to town proclaiming themselves as the saviours of federalism and democracy are trying to subvert the process of law and creating a constitutional crisis.

If these people claim that the investigations and indictments of various political parties in various scams is a vendetta of the government against them and they are truly honest why do they block investigation agencies from doing their work in their respective states. Why not present themselves before the investigative agencies when called upon and place the facts in front?

These accounts illustrate the deliberate abuse of their position of power. Looking through it there definitely is a pattern to their hypocrisy. When the results or decisions go in their favour and feed their propaganda the very same institutions uphold the constitution and democracy. But when things go against them the same people brazenly attack the same institutions.

In this power struggle between the Opposition parties and the ruling dispensation, the institutions are getting hammered. The Congress and its affiliated political outfits who have enjoyed the fruits of political power for a very long seem a bit rattled seeing their misdeeds becoming public. To cover their tracks, they continually have tried to subvert protocol and procedure; they have maligned bureaucrats and officers trying to jeopardise the functioning of the system. In the process I believe they are doing things what they have accused the government of. Has the accuser become the accused?

©Vijayhardik Josyula

Photos sourced by the author

#Politics #WestBengalPolitics #IndianGovernment #ElectionCommission #CentralBureaoOfInvenstigation #IndianPolitics #DifferentTruths

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