By: Satyakam Bharti
Shimla: It has been a spectacular win for the Congress party and the United Progressive Alliance as a whole – perhaps the most unexpected result in the history of independent India. On the contrary, the results in Himachal have been on the expected line. At the end of it – after the pre-poll gloom of the prospects of dealing with yet another fractured verdict with almost everybody of some worth projecting themselves as the prime minister – what has emerged is hope for a better democracy, powered by the sensitive and intelligent voter of India. People wanted stability, development and therefore at the local level forces like anti-incumbency factor too failed to stop the UPA coalition from claiming victory. In fact, good work done by any party has paid them dividend as is evident from Nitish Kumar’s landslide victory in Bihar, and also as claimed by DMK in Tamil Nadu.
The Third Front’s class fight characterized by Mayawati’s social engineering too failed miserably, making it clear that there is no immediate social revolution in the making, or in other words parties swearing by sectarian ideology first need to act and then talk about change. Mayawati swept the UP elections swearing social engineering, but all she has been able to achieve is to continue with class dominance, which, of course, has not gone unnoticed.
The Left Front’s crouching defeat in its strongholds West Bengal, Kerala and almost throughout the country should make them think of the practicality of their ideas, if they have any in today’s context. The BJP should have got a lesson on what constitutes strong leadership – it’s not rhetoric but decisive governance that leads the country ahead and not in different directions. It’s time for them to bury their communal agenda without inhibitions and work for real nationalism.
The Congress party too should grow wiser after contesting these elections, understanding that the country needs more projects like the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme. It should not limit its efforts on how to retain or appease its flock of supporters, but to work on a long term development plan for the country – India 2020 vision is still not invalid. It can happen, provided the glimpses of egalitarian resurrection that were seen during Rahul Gandhi’s campaigning do not turn out to be a farce.