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Gujarat, HP, MP- Election 2007 - 3
<b>Sonia rakes up Kandahar hostage issue, but few turn up for rally</b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->The low turnout at Ahmedabad rally, according to political analysts, explains the lack of influence of the Congress over urban voters who have been gradually shifting towards the BJP. Campaigning for the second phase of Assembly polls, Sonia Gandhi responded to the continued BJP allegations in Dabhoi in Vadodara district. “You must have realised that BJP is panicking, the masks are falling,” she said in her 10-minute speech at Dabhoi<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd--> <!--emo&Big Grin--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='biggrin.gif' /><!--endemo-->
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Rivals' criticism strengthens Modi</b>
Third, the degree of Sangh Parivar disunity is grossly overstated. In recent weeks, the entire BJP extended family has shown a degree of purposeful cohesiveness in Gujarat. True, some key state-level leaders of Sangh frontal organisations are sitting it out, but the bulk of the Parivar is very much in canvassing and mobilisation mode.

"The split in the Parivar," explained one party functionary, "is horizontal, not vertical. A layer of disgruntled leaders has dropped out. But the base below remains committed to Modi and the BJP."

Ashok Singhal and Togadia are in bed with Congress. Togadia brother had joined Congress formally. When NDA was in power, everyday they will come in front of camera and make a call for Shilaniyas in Ayodhya, since UPA came into power they are doing everything to destroy BJP. Now they have completely stopped announcement for Shilanyas. And they have no explanation. Even in Gujarat, everyone knows initially riots was reaction and later it was hijacked by criminal elements, whole world is after Modi as his involvement is as direct as Tytler or Sajjan or other Congressi, who were providing petrol and jeeps to criminals in Delhi to kill Sikhs. In place of standing behind Modi these guys are supporting Keshubhai Patel who failed to handle earthquake relief and was doing nothing.

People like Togadia, Singhal, Keshubhai Patel, Uma Bharati etc are more dangerous than any congressi. These people are greedy for fame and power without any long term vision, only live for SELF.
Will the West ignore Modi if he wins?
14 Dec 2007, 0240 hrs IST,Rajiv Shah ,TNN
AHMEDABAD: The number of under secretaries, political analysts and mission officials who have landed in Gujarat in the last few weeks from New Delhi-based embassies is an indicator of how closely the whole world is watching the Gujarat elections.

Officials from North America and Europe have been moving around Ahmedabad trying to get a sense of whether the man they have declared persona non-grata would sweep back to power.

Sources in the hospitality industry say that they have had a number of guests from embassies of western countries in recent weeks.

For many countries, a win for Modi would mean that while their governments cannot have official links with the Modi establishment, their companies are allowed to do business with a state which, recent surveys show, is the best investment destination in India, even though it may still be struggling with FDI inflows.

USA has denied Modi a visa and Canada will probably do so if Modi wanted to take a peek at Montreal. UK has told him that he can visit the country as a commoner. They won't give diplomatic or security cover to him.

For European Union governments, having debated the Gujarat riots in the European Parliament and found government complicity in the genocide, it is not a very comforting thought that they can't do business in such a promising state if Modi remains at the helm for the next five years.

The only place Modi goes to in Europe is Davos because Switzerland is not part of European Union.

Modi has tried to cultivate goodwill abroad through top lobbying firm, Apco International. A top Modi aide said, "We think that once he wins, strong commercial factors will make Modi more acceptable to EU countries."

The West is also watching closely how Modi has switched over his attention to the East and opened up dialogue with governments in China, Japan, Korea, Hong Kong and Singapore during his visits, with huge business delegations in tow, to these 'Tiger Economies'.

Says the Modi aide, who has planned some of his foreign tours, "Our focus on Asia has a regional advantage. These countries recognise openly the tremendous potential which Gujarat has."

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><span style='color:red'>History needs many apologies</span>

Balbir K Punj

A good part of Gujarat's population of voters has cast its vote. Pollsters have already enlightened us, howsoever perfectly or perfunctorily, on how they have voted. Whoever wins, it is certain that Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi would for long be the talking point and grist to the country's large pseudo-secular mill. The Chief Minister's remarks on hanging the mastermind behind the attack on the Parliament House, Afzal Guru, and killing of a dubious wheeler-dealer, Sohrabuddin Sheikh, have given them enough to pillory him, making it all look as if the entire election were Modi versus the rest.

There need not be any justification for a Chief Minister who claims that he would like to hang someone whom the Supreme Court has already sentenced to death but whose sentence the Union Government is wary of executing. Nor does bringing the alleged extra-judicial killing of another person with a long criminal record into the public discourse during an election merit a profound analysis. Such poll-time rhetoric reflects only what many Governments overtly or covertly are doing. Across the country, how many 'encounter killings' of dacoits and tricky criminals are in fact extra-judicial is anybody's guess.

One of the most notorious of such incidents is traced to the police under former Congress Chief Minister of Kerala K Karunakaran, who, during the Emergency, killed engineering student Rajan on the pretext that he was a Naxalite. It took many years and a patient campaign by the boy's father to nail down Mr Karunakaran who then had to resign. But no Congress leader ever expressed even a semblance of regret for the crime.

During the Congress regime in Madhya Pradesh in the late 1960s, the then Maharaja of Bastar, Pravir Chandra Bhanj-Deo, was openly shot at and killed for his alleged participation in a silly revolt against the state. Nobody resigned or expressed regret for the incident though it was public knowledge that the former Maharaja was a thorn in the neck of Congress leaders in the State and had been in and out of prison under preventive detention several times. Back then, the human rights lobby had not set up its shops yet. So, the extra-judicial killing under the Congress regime was not mourned.

The "merchants of death" charge, which UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi levelled against Mr Modi, is even more ricocheting. The entire 19-months' period of Emergency saw many citizens with whom the Congress was uncomfortable being jailed, tortured and even killed in the course of interrogation or otherwise. Had the election of 1977 not intervened, the tandav would have continued. The Congress never said sorry for its excesses during Emergency.

The 1984 anti-Sikh pogrom was justified by then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi as, "When a giant tree falls, the earth below shakes." The Maoists are running amok in central and eastern India and the death toll caused by them is mounting. Has the Congress president ever showed the courage to call them "merchants of death"? How could she afford to when the Left is keeping her party in power?

Chief Minister of West Bengal Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee has admitted that his party cadre had launched the armed attack that killed several people in Nandigram. The Congress did not call him "merchant of death".

As for the post-Godhra riot, condemnation came from the BJP's topmost leaders. Interestingly, a section of the former leaders of the BJP, who figured prominently in the 2002 riot, have come out in support of the Congress in this election. Why did the Congress not tell them to get off its train?

Irrespective of the Gujarat election results, the fundamental problems in national security will not go away. The recent spate of terrorist attacks affected the length and breadth of the country -- Mumbai, Malegaon, Ajmer, Hyderabad, Lucknow and so on. Despite Muslims being targeted and killed in many of these cases, leaders from the community have not united to ensure that the merchants of terror do not find safe havens in Muslim localities. Instead, they, aided by the so-called secularists, encourage religious extremism. L'affaire Taslima Nasreen is one such telling incident where the Congress chose to play footsie with the extremists.

The Communists in West Bengal have simply pampered Muslim extremists instead of combating them. In the cases ranging from Shah Bano to Ms Nasreen, should the Congress do some retrospection, it would find itself guilty of helping Muslim extremism. In fact, the party has fanned a sense of permanent 'grievance' in that community.

In Muslim-majority (51 per cent) Malaysia, the question is not one of discrimination against the Tamils among the three ethnic groups in Malaysia: Malays, Chinese and Tamil. It is a question of the Muslim majority imposing its will on the minority Hindus, razing their temples saying that they were built illegally while refusing permission to build any new Hindu places of worship legally, of declaring people as Muslims even when they have not converted to Islam and forcibly separating Hindu wives from their Muslim husbands.

Malaysia, which was once a liberal democracy, is steadily treading the path of Islam and becoming authoritarian. The Hindus in that country have been marginalised; their share in the national wealth is reducing and job opportunities shrinking under the bhumiputra (Malays only) policy. As most Malays are Muslims, it is easy to package this 'Muslims only' policy as 'Malays only' policy, hiding Islamic extremism under the nationalist veneer.

Why is Malaysia different from Singapore, which is secular in every respect, though the latter's populace too is as varied, consisting of Chinese, Tamils and Malays? Is it not because an Islamic country is intolerant of other religions? Is it not the same story in Bangladesh? This analysis works for Kashmir as well, from where the Hindu population has been driven out.

In the Christian majority US, the legislatures have welcomed Hindu scriptures being recited in-House. In the UK, the Prime Minister attended a function held on the occasion of Diwali and Prince Charles publicly stated that he would like to be crowned when his time comes in all major religious rites of his people, though technically he is the Defender of the (Christian) faith.

But in India, not even a single Muslim leader has spoken for the Malay Hindus. Why blame Mr Modi alone for his election-time rhetoric?

Thanks Mudy.

Ramana I dont know how it can be replicated. Re what next, if Modi wins big expect media to go outright hostile and dumb. I saw a prog on NDTV where a bimbo outright accused gujjus as wimps, always favoring proxy wars as opposed to real-wars. As an example she used a pretty curious statistic - she said gujjus dont enroll in army but were the biggest donors to kargil charity funds. <!--emo&:blink:--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/blink.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='blink.gif' /><!--endemo-->

Viren most of the gujju newspapers are against Modi. There was an interesting opinion poll done before elections which might be interesting for political guroos out here.


Here some main conclusions

- 84% are satisfied with the current govt
- 85% are satisfied with Modi
- BJP will get 100-110 seats
- Shankersinh Vaghela (ex-RSS), pradesh congress biggie, staunch hindutvavadi is congress' best bet as CM.
- 56% feel dissidents have no impact
- 78% believe development is the main issue
- 59% are unsatisfied with their MLA and 56% havent seen their MLAs since last election - compare this with 85% satisfaction with Modi and one can perhaps understand the larger-then-life image that Modi holds inspite of the anti-incumbency.
- 71% think politicians are full of sh1t
- people expect 50-60% turnout
- 66% dont care about godhra-kand and its aftermath
- 77% satisfied with law and order
- 63% dont think corruption has gone up
- except for employment (48%) people are satisfied with all areas of development
- 56% feel INC is too internally divided
- 51% feel INC is a good opposition party

Seem aMustafa in a tizzy BJP must be winning.

In Deccan Chronicle

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Secularism derailed </b>
By Seema Mustafa

<b>It is almost unreal.</b> This should have been 2002, but it is 2007 in Gujarat. What the Congress should have done in 2002 after the violence had consumed 2,000 souls, and left a trail of death and destruction, it is doing now in 2007, almost as if the five intervening years never happened. And the Congress just woke up, one fine day, to pick up the threads of 2002 without a word as to where it had been all these years, and why it had left the ground to the Ugly Indian (read Narendra Modi) and his men to convert into a one-team playing field.

There are those who will say and are saying better late than never. At least, there is a fight now, and the Congress is trying to give the Ugly Indian a run for his dirty money. It does not matter that it did not raise the issue for five years, it does not matter it is seeking help from those who were leading the mobs against the minorities at the time, the means do not matter, the end does. And the end is that the Ugly Indian must be defeated at all costs. But if this argument is to be accepted, then <b>it is also to be accepted that the Ugly Indian is a charismatic leader for many in his state, has a special appeal for the women and the youth, and has a support base that makes him taller than other leaders in the BJP and the RSS, and indeed the Congress, within the state.</b> So does that mean he has the legitimate right to continue in office, even though he has the blood of hundreds on his hands?

<b>Democracy,</b> they say, i<b>s what the people want and in Gujarat the people think they want the Ugly Indian.</b> Otherwise, there is no explaining the crowds who endorse his every question with passionate shouts, who publicly call for executions, who assure the man that he is the best, and that he is their leader, not the BJP, not the RSS, not anyone. <b>So if one accepts the argument that the fight in Gujarat is between secularism and communalism, then one will have to accept that the people of the state are communal as they are endorsing Modi and the violence that killed and traumatised thousands in 2002.</b> <i>Now she is blaming the whole population of Gujarat. Seems like Sagarika Ghose bug has bit her.}</i>

<b>These arguments are fallacious. Gujarat is not communal. The Ugly Indian is communal, indeed, fascist. The Congress is not secular, as it is not waging a strictly secular fight in the state.</b> It is taking the help of those who stood beside Modi and encouraged the mobs to kill the minorities in 2002. The Bajrang Dal man known for the victimisation of the Christian minorities in Dangs is the Youth Congress president. The former home minister who had personally sat in the control rooms to ensure that the police supported the killing mobs is one of the cheerleaders for the Congress in this campaign. These people will extract more than a pound of flesh after the elections. They are not in the game to dispense charity. And through it all, the minorities who have suffered through the years are still too scared and traumatised to think for themselves.

<b>Secularism is a political ideology.</b> And the task of political parties who take the oath under the Constitution of India is to make it a way of life. <i>{What she is saying is under the rubric of secularism the majority has lawsy to be kept under check of ever deeming to impose their will that their numbers will allow in a democracy. So its a millat whether its a democracy or not.}</i> And until it is understood as such, the so called secular political parties like the Congress can only weave an uneasy, patchwork truce that will feed into the right, and strengthen the communal forces even if it manages to keep them out of power temporarily. One does not have to go too far back in history to demonstrate the truth of this statement. The Shah Bano judgment strengthened the Muslim fundamentalists in the short run, but eventually the communal agenda was hijacked by the Hindu fanatics who used the concession given by the government to the minorities on this issue to whip up passions over the Babri Masjid issue. <b>The flirtation with the communal forces by the Congress leaders at the time did not make the communal forces secular. On the other hand, it shifted Congress politics to the right, infused it with a strong dose of communalism, and ensured that the party was never again able to take any decision free from fundamentalist influence.</b>

It has taken the Congress five long years to enter the fray in Gujarat. Incalculable damage has been done in the meanwhile by the communal forces in the state that were able to operate freely, without any opposition. The secular voices were trampled in the process, with the Congress unable to muster the courage to lead from the front. The constant looking over the back approach, for fear of alienating one or the other vote bank, cost not just the party but also secularism in Gujarat, with the communal forces taking hold of every institution in the state.

The victims of the 2002 violence have been virtually wiped out of existence, with their lives destroyed and no help even today in sight. No one is talking of their future, they barely exist in this campaign. The "merchants of death" epithet has been a little late in coming for the Ugly Indian, and the Prime Minister certainly did not add to anyone’s sense of confidence when he said that the people had been at the mercy of the BJP with only God to turn to. <b>Where was the Congress? Where was the Central government?</b>

<b>Even now the Congress is contesting these elections, as a senior journalist from the state said, with an eye on everything else but the people of Gujarat.</b> The elections are a launching pad for Rahul Gandhi; the elections are to convince the country about the strength of Sonia Gandhi; the elections are to tell the Muslims that the Congress has the courage to fight the Ugly Indian; the elections are to get the green card to proceed with the India-US civilian nuclear energy agreement; the elections are to get the space to pursue policies despite opposition from the Left and others. <b>That is why it is so important to win, and that is why the Congress has opened its doors for every communal character to walk in and pick up one of the hundreds of secular badges lying around for consumption.</b>

If the elections had been for secularism, the Congress would have contested these differently. For one, it would not have hesitated for even a second to take the plunge in 2002, regardless of the consequences. Two, it would have redoubled efforts to win over the people of the state long before this election was held. <b>It would have worked to rehabilitate the victims of the violence, it would have stood by the oppressed and the victimised, it would have worked with the tribals and the adivasis, and it would have held meetings, seminars, conferences to spread secularism as the only doctrine capable of defeating the Ugly Indian.</b> It would have hit Modi where it hurt, and exposed him to his people as a megalomaniac, peddling development for personal gains, and using religion to divide and kill. The same Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi and what have you, all the Congress "stars" should have proved their worth and their commitment to Indian democracy by seizing Gujarat as a challenge and putting their entire strength into isolating and defeating the Ugly Indian and the forces he represents.

This is not happening now. The Congress might win, or lose, it will still remain at best a fractured verdict. The politics of Modi is not on trial, as it should have been. <b>It cannot be as those who were part of his politics are now with the Congress, and do not regret the 2002 violence.</b> The fight appears to have become personal, although to be fair, this is not how the Congress wanted it to be. <b>But it should have expected it, considering the fact that many campaigning for it today admit that they are with the Congress because of the personal characteristics of Modi that they cannot tolerate. He, on the other hand, appears to be revelling in the criticism, as it gives him a chance to project himself more and more aggressively.</b>

This would not have been the position had the Congress worked in Gujarat from day one, and instead of using the elections to score brownie points used it as a battleground for secularism. <b>A campaign for development, for justice, for equal rights, for dignity and respect — all ingredients of secularism — cannot be waged through last minute, opportunistic alliances.</b> It has to be taken carefully and yet firmly into the state, particularly one as corrupted as it has become under the Ugly Indian, with his distortions and falsehoods and doctrine of hate, over the years through a decisive campaign that has little to do with electoral victory but more to do with saving the nation.

If this had been done by the Congress, victory today would have been solid and real. The Ugly Indian would have collapsed, never to walk again.


As an exercise copy the file into MS Word and replace every occurence of secualrism with millat and then see what it reads. I think we have the mind of the IM elite on display here. They made a bargin with INC after the Partition that INC will insititute a millat inside modern India that is Bharat. INC came through with its 'pseudo secualrism". That bargain is getting frayed and the IM elite is angry at the INC for not betting down others who were not part of the bargain. Do Gujarati IM really have a beef with Modi's developement agenda? Dont they also benefit when every one beneftis?

This article brings up interestig issues. What will happen to the political stability when Modi type new thinking comes to the fore and captures the Center?
<!--QuoteBegin-Mudy+Dec 14 2007, 09:28 AM-->QUOTE(Mudy @ Dec 14 2007, 09:28 AM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->Muppalla,
Ashok Singhal and Togadia are in bed with Congress. Togadia brother had joined Congress formally. When NDA was in power, everyday they will come in front of camera and make a call for Shilaniyas in Ayodhya, since UPA came into power they are doing everything to destroy BJP. Now they have completely stopped announcement for Shilanyas. And they have no explanation. Even in Gujarat, everyone knows initially riots was reaction and later it was hijacked by criminal elements, whole world is after Modi as his involvement is as direct as Tytler or Sajjan or other Congressi, who were providing petrol and jeeps to criminals in Delhi to kill Sikhs. In place of standing behind Modi these guys are supporting Keshubhai Patel who failed to handle earthquake relief and was doing nothing.

People like Togadia, Singhal, Keshubhai Patel, Uma Bharati etc are more dangerous than any congressi. These people are greedy for fame and power without any long term vision, only live for SELF.

If what you are saying is right then there is a very large problem with VHP. Why are they leading these orgs? They should have been kicked out by the next in line. BJP at least is taking care of members' dicipline by kicking out Kalyan Singh, Uma etc. They can be taken back but at the party's terms.

The huge indicipline in the sangh parivar is very frustrating. Our generations are in interesting times. If the sangh parivar cannot kick out the anti national outfit from politics, there will be very costly and long drawn path to bring normalcy in India. I haven't seen any news related to dialogue among the think tanks of these orgs. These orgs needs a lot of churning and corrections. The cadre needs to be trained in strategy and long term vision. It is not difficult as they are very literate folks.
Unlike BJP, VHP and its children are not political organizations but social and cultural organizations. They can not put all their eggs in one basket, i.e. BJP. If they do, they will be smashed when BJP goes out of power and also in places where BJP is not in power. If they depend completely on BJP for political support, it may start using VHP only for votes and ignore its demands the way ABV did.

For VHP, RSS etc. it is better to spread their allegiances and not to stick to one party; of course they can have a preferred party. Their agenda is much broader than that of BJP and not confined to a narrow political prism. They know that they need to survive even if BJP disappears tomorrow, the way Jan Sangh did. Also, there should be reasons for BJP to woo VHP/RSS, only then BJP leaders will listen to the demands of these organizations.

It is in the long term national interest that these organizations have influence in all major national parties.
They are neither spreading allegiances not creating new viable alternatives. They are just whining a lot about the ones who are achieving atleast something for Hindutva.

They should not become like Ambi kumars, Mir jaffars and Mir Qasims of modern day. First off all their main supporting party BJP is even not completely in grip. How can they create another right of centric party or completely right wing political parties.

You cannot win divided. Period.
[ ramana,Dec 15 2007, 03:50 AM]

As an exercise copy the file into MS Word and replace every occurence of secualrism with millat and then see what it reads. I think we have the mind of the IM elite on display here. They made a bargin with INC after the Partition that INC will insititute a millat inside modern India that is Bharat. INC came through with its 'pseudo  secualrism". That bargain is getting frayed and the IM elite is angry at the INC for not betting down others  who were not part of the bargain. Do Gujarati IM really have a beef with Modi's developement agenda? Dont they also benefit when every one beneftis?

This article brings up interestig issues. What will happen to the political stability when Modi type new thinking comes to the fore and captures the Center?


Do Gujarati IM really have a beef with Modi's developement agenda? Dont they also benefit when every one beneftis?

They made a bargin with INC after the Partition that INC will insititute a millat inside modern India that is Bharat.
Until about 1975, IMs were much tamer thanks to memory of sikh / hindu reprisals in east punjab and there was no nationa need for a INC bargain with IMs
other than a vote bank


99% of IMs want to create darul-islam and will vote for any party that abets this
They dont care about development, since once darul islam is established, they can loot hindu property
National Interest Modi versus Modi
Shekhar GuptaPosted online: Saturday, December 15, 2007 at 0000 hrs Print EmailIt is not BJP vs the Congress, or Modi vs Soniaben. Narendra Modi’s own voters will decide whether to re-elect or defeat him

Narendra Modi’s supporters — and you still find lots and lots of them in Gujarat — would like you to believe that he is more than just invincible. Invincibility, in any case, is something for mere humans to value. It is not that relevant when you talk of their leader. You talk, instead, of his super-human qualities. He has transformed Gujarat, he has restored not just Gujarati, but even Hindu and, finally, Indian pride. He has brought 24-hour, three-phase power and Narmada water to each home. He is an orator par excellence, a worthy successor to Atalji in that department (though nobody ever accused the grand old man of the BJP of being a rabble rouser). He can hold a crowd — albeit of believers — in thrall. A gaggle of women representing three generations of Gujaratis occupying the row behind mine at his rally in Shihore compete, and ultimately translate his lines for me in chorus as I lean back to understand the nuances of his stunning 70-minute sermon. And as applause greets one of his most loaded — and coded — lines insinuating that it was the Muslims who were mostly responsible for lawlessness (“your women no longer have to fear some Aalia, Maalia, Kamaalia”), one of them chirps in, in a sort of fried in the groundnut oil Gujarati inflexion that stresses the consonants and shortens the vowels: “He is a supperman, himman (superman, he-man).” You hear more of the same from his followers, mainly the young and the women, as you go along. Sure enough, one of his campaign’s latest boasts is about his “56-inch chest”.

Putting all eggs in one basket comes into picture if there are more than one egg and more than one basket. No scenario like that is exists. These folks need to understand that they are fighting to restore the completely lost battle under extreme adverse conditions. Some of their actions in the 90s gave some hope and instead of building on the hope, they started egoistic battles inside the parivar by asking for practically impossible things.

More than one egg and more one basket scenario comes only after they get to Delhi on their own without the nonsense of Nitish Kumars and Mamatas. They can dissent internally but not rock the boat.

RSS and VHP needs new leadership at this juncture and the current ones are in a wrong path with no strategy and vision. These orgs need a common strategy to create the base called hindu vote bank.

I beleive there is something very wrong even in the second rung and third rung leadership of VHP and RSS. Most of them are very educated but are not able to see the big picture. They should atleast remove the ones in the top and behaving like Ambhi kumars.
Shekhar Gupta said the same thing while chatting with NDTV. This is the same thing that congressi keep saying over and over again. Watch the debate i posted earlier - after all of the arguments put up by anti-modi crowd get demolised a congressi mahanubhaav says - > but what about his arrogance onlee.. <!--emo&Smile--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/smile.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='smile.gif' /><!--endemo-->

Somehow somewhere somebody has come up with this strategy of reverse-psychology where you start saying -> yes you are the winners, you are better then us, your leader too is better then us, and yes we lick a$$ day in and day out but your leader is .......... tada ............ arrogant !! Lets see how successful this strategy is..



Whether its true or not will only be known after elections, but word is muslims too are in favor of Modi or atleast were before the maut-ka-saudagar speech.
now we know why forum is suddenly more alive.

Rajesh Ji: welcome welcome.
RajeshG, I thought the IM were with Modi hence the need to play the communal card. Thats what Sonia played. This has two purposes - alienate them in Gujarat and might pick up some seats and assure the IM in rest of India that INC is their sole godfather.

The secular brigade sees that their USP is loosing its sheen if Modi gets elected and are moving no stone unturned to tarnish his win. The problem with this approach is it reduces is legitimacy.

The less said the better with the turncoats and Modi back stabbers as they are doing what they do best. I really think a new wave is emerging that will marginalize them and make them irrelevant.

After the elections Modi should aks the supporters of those groups (Keshub's etc., supporters) whether they are better off economically and socially under his leadership or under their dodderhead oldies who were at best seat warmers.

In my little town the Indian community is divided under the leadership of such dodderheads who rely on group loyalties and not on merits of people who further their interests. The dodderheads use their leadership to garner personal favors for themselves and permits etc., using the community support, from the outside US political leaders. even younger people who get their bread and butter from rest of community rally around the dodderheads when the community card is played by their contacts.

So I am quite familiar with this phenomenon.

Lets see in two weeks how things turn out.

<b>Modi versus chalta hai

Swapan Dasgupta</b>

The most interesting feature of Indian elections is that the logic of a verdict is understood and appreciated only in retrospect. Despite a multitude of pundits, pollsters and prophets insisting 'I-told-you-so', the fact is that no one can be certain of the outcome till the initial trends from the counting centres pour in.

The Gujarat Assembly election is likely to be no exception. Never mind what the media says about the 2002 election being a "wave", the fact is that the intensity of the popular mood was not appreciated even after the polling. I clearly recall a prominent Congress leader (now a Cabinet Minister) telling me that "our Government will be sworn in next week". Then he proceeded to explain why the Congress' "scientific" candidate selection process had undermined the communal polarisation of the riots. Even the BJP leaders didn't detect the popular upsurge that was to make Narendra Modi the Gujarati folk hero. A large number of dubious polls were circulated by a section of party leaders to show that the BJP would, at best, get a whisker thin majority. The phrase "Atalji is not very happy" was bandied about.

In many ways, this month's election was almost a carbon copy of the one held five years ago. Of course, there are differences: The NGOs are not that much in evidence, there is no overt Hindu-Muslim tension on the streets and Modi has no backers in the media. But the substantive part of the election chemistry seems intact.

Like 2002, Modi is drawing huge crowds. Initially the media went into denial about his star attraction suggesting that the attendance at his meetings was paltry. I met a reporter of a fiercely anti-Modi TV channel at a frenzied rally on the outskirts of Ahmedabad where the crowd was over 1.5 lakh. "This is a pocket borough", he said dismissively, "the crowds are only to be expected." Three days back, the channel switched tack, acknowledged that Modi was drawing frenzied crowds and then proceeded to proffer intriguing theories of how he was being packaged by professional PR men. I particularly liked the suggestion that even the movement of Modi's fingers during a speech was carefully rehearsed.

In 2002, the suggestion that Vajpayee will be unhappy at a Modi victory did the rounds of BJP circles. <b>This month, the RSS has been praised for its staid approach to Hindutva by pundits who earlier saw it as a replica of Hitler's stormtroopers. </b>There has been a contrived controversy over yet another Vajpayee letter and it is being put out that a Modi victory will be tantamount to a BJP defeat.

The theory is fascinating but the reality is a little more complex. There are divisions in the Sangh Parivar in Gujarat over Modi but the divide seems to be along horizontal rather than vertical lines. In other words, <b>while a section of the top leadership of a few RSS-linked organisations has chosen to either abstain from the polls or actively support the Congress, the foot soldiers are vocal cheerleaders for Modi.</b><i>{The next step should be to eliminate these top leaders even like the way shorabuddin would be better for hindutva. The foot soldiers should remove these top leaders from their leadership.}</i> The analogy given by a BJP leader of the saffron split in Gujarat being akin to the 1969 Congress split seems apt: A few top leaders went with the Syndicate but Indira Gandhi took the party rank-and-file. She also carried the voters.<i>{she made the people like brahmananda reddy etc. useless after her ascent. Modi should follow her footsteps in this case as well.}</i>

There is a final observation. Modi has built a formidable brand around himself. His administrative acumen, selflessness and oratory are undeniably part of the brand attribute. Yet, its cutting edge lies in the fact that Modi is perceived as the man who can take on a rotten establishment, whether in his party, in Delhi or in the media. Modi does not appeal to the chattering classes. That is what makes him formidable and appealing. It is the strength of that appeal that is being tested through the ballot box. <i>{God give Modi strength. This victory will be historic for India in the long run. This brand of hindutva has to move to every state. Loss will put the hindutva away from power for a long time.}</i>

The 2007 Gujarat election may result in a lot of wisdom in hindsight. Modi is not fighting Modi; he is pitting himself against a chalta hai culture.<i>{Very nicely put.}</i>
Hindu reports

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--> Congress short on confidence in north Gujarat

Manas Dasgupta

Congress hopes to cash in on the issue of price rise

<b>“Keshubhai is Congress’ strength”</b>

MEHSANA (North Gujarat): A few youth workers were arguing among themselves at the district Congress office in Mehsana, nerve centre of north Gujarat. One of them said, “When I went to Kherao village, the local people told me that the BJP government has constructed five checkdams.”

“Didn’t you tell them that the construction was so poor that the checkdams have already developed cracks,” asked another.

“Yes, I did. But the reaction was even more stunning. The villagers said: True, cracks have developed. But at least the checkdams are there, constructed by Modiji [Chief Minister Narendra Modi]. When your party was in power, it did not construct even one checkdam to save our crops in the post-monsoon season.”

A few metres away, district Congress president Chunaji Thakore, conversing with journalists, said: “This time our party is going to win all seven seats in Mehsana district.” A quick glance at the party workers sitting around convinced him that it was too tall a claim. “Ok, if not all the seven, we will win at least five seats,” Mr. Thakore said. He is not prepared to climb down further, at least not before the journalists.

Summing up the lack of conviction among both the youth workers and the district president to counter the Modi juggernaut at least in the BJP-stronghold of north Gujarat, <b>another senior leader said: “On its own, the Congress cannot win any seat in Mehsana district, and for that matter in the entire north Gujarat. But this time our strength is Keshubhai Patel [the veteran BJP dissident leader and former Chief Minister].”</b>

Amrut Patel, district unit secretary and vice-president of the Visnagar taluk unit, said: <b>“If Keshubhai swings just about 10 per cent of the Patel votes against Mr. Modi’s candidates, we will be through in about a dozen constituencies in the region.”</b>

This is the level of confidence among Congress leaders in Mehsana, where just about three months ago party president Sonia Gandhi addressed a successful rally attended by over three lakh farmers. Her public meeting last week in Patan was equally impressive but the local leaders are not very enthusiastic. “It still does not mean that it will substantially tilt the balance in north Gujarat,” a party leader said.

The Congress is counting on price rise to work to its advantage. But will not this issue go against the party, which is in power at the Centre, and hence responsible for price rise on many counts? “That may be partly true in urban areas, but <b>the people in villages hold the State government responsible for every thing, good for bad,” Mr. Patel said.</b>

Particularly hitting the common people was the high price of groundnut oil. “Farmers understand that they were forced to sell groundnut at comparatively cheap rates but after that the Modi government has allowed oil mill owners to jack up prices to corner huge profits,” he said.

Not sure of impact

The Congress leaders are not sure what impact the Tehelka exposure on the 2002 Gujarat carnage, the Ram Sethu and other such issues have left on the riot-hit voters of north Gujarat.

<b>If the Congress is low in confidence, the BJP seems to be over-confident of the “Modi magic” sweeping the polls yet again.</b>

Barring Mr. Modi’s meetings, the BJP electioneering remained low key as most of the party leaders in north Gujarat districts did not even think that they had to campaign much.

“The Congress does not exist in this region and Keshubhai and his supporter, Dr. A.K. Patel, the former Union Minister, have no support base in the north,” a senior BJP leader said.

Narmada water supply

All other factors apart, the BJP leaders feel, the government’s endeavour of bringing Narmada waters through canals to the dry rivers in the north and supply of good potable water for the first time will itself tilt the balance in favour of their party.

<b>The allegations of corruption apart, the Sujalam Sufalam project has brought irrigation supply to many villages where sub-soil water has gone down alarmingly low.</b>

The BJP won 33 seats out of the 49 seats in the region at the height of the communal frenzy in 2002. In the previous two elections, its tally there was 39 and 35 seats.

The BJP district president, Keshubhai Patel, (not the dissident leader), however, cautions against complacency. “We have to be careful that our ‘feel-good’ campaign for Modiji does not boomerang on us, as did the ‘India shining’ slogan in the parliamentary elections.”
Whole fascist brigade is against Modi, but what you think temperature around your area?
What is people reaction towards negative campaign against Modi?
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->while a section of the top leadership of a few RSS-linked organisations has chosen to either abstain from the polls or actively support the Congress, the foot soldiers are vocal cheerleaders for Modi.{The next step should be to eliminate these top leaders even like the way shorabuddin would be better for hindutva. The foot soldiers should remove these top leaders from their leadership.} <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
He is refering to VHP, especailly Togadia and Singhal. Togadia is one who is Congress best friend, after his brother joined Congress there is no fog any more.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Modi, Modi all the way</b>
Not that he was at all interested in TV, unless some brash interviewer chose to ask him questions which he tackled with more than ease. But it was not the studio which was his battleground, it was the wide open spaces where milling mobs answered his rhetorical questions with loud rhetorical answers and while those milling mobs certainly filled the small screen it was Modi who towered over them all. <b>In fact, the Modi phenomenon on TV dwarfed everything else </b>even if in the process it broke all the rules which media schools tend to teach their eager pupils.

Gujarat is one of the most colourful and interesting States in India which gave us Mahatma Gandhi and Vikram Sarabhai, whose spirited daughter Mallika livens panel discussions on TV with her liberal views and artistic background. Gujarat is the home of exquisite handicrafts, of diamond merchants and Ahmedabad, with its historic gullys. And all these also come on TV to remind us of its uniqueness.

Meanwhile, the famous analysts give us their expert views on TV. Yogendra Yadav, Sopariwala, Prannoy Roy, Rajdeep Sardesai. Some take Gujarat area by area with maps, south Gujarat, Saurashtra and compare voting five years ago with the trends now. We had exit polls and an opposition leader of great status who ultimately decided not to vote. But all this becomes academic because until the results come out (and at the time of writing they are not in sight and the day this column appears will see the second round of voting). So all we can do is watch <b>Modi dominating the screen. The man's self-confidence is awesome and he seems least bothered about the voting in his speeches, so sure is he of himself. So we can only watch and wait</b>. But on one thing all the analysts agree: That he is a regional and not a potential national leader. Well we can only wait and see. <!--emo&Big Grin--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='biggrin.gif' /><!--endemo-->

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