Chandigarh, July 15: Punjab Deputy Chief Minister and the Shiromani Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal has come out with an interesting articulation. He won’t be seeking votes anymore in the name of much trumpeted development or by projecting his father and fifth time Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal as the most experienced person to govern the state. There is no need to seek votes in the name of the Akali Dal that at one time was the party of the Aam Sikh. He is clear that all this would not matter as the people this time are going to vote for the candidate, not the party.
Going by his articulation, he and his father would have a little role to play after the selection of candidates except funding rebels or those who can make dent into the support base of the two main rivals. That in itself is part of strategic electoral warfare.
Sukhbir is desperate to retain power for various reasons that are more than just political. His development card is not working anymore and he knows is too well. He stopped talking of administrative reforms some years back. The agenda of a dynamic person must keep in changing and the leader must keep on shifting his or her position from time to time. He stands to lose more than power in case the party is shown the door by the voters who seem to be angry this time, at least at the present jucture.
Aam Aadmi Party convener and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal is another desperate man seeking to enlarge his footprint. He is desperate to cash upon the tsunami of anti-incumbency. However, in his desperation, he seems to have lagged behind his two other rivals so far as the use of the routine political tactics are concerned.
In his scheme of things, the state leadership has little role to play and it is for this reason that the local leaders are just mute spectators at almost every news conference that is dominated by its state incharge Sanjay Singh on Kejriwal’s behalf, the single man high command in this case. The party, in its desperate bid to capture power has gone to the extent of appealing to the voters’ sensibility in the name of the Golden Temple, the holiest of the holy shrine of the Sikhs with a message of universal brotherhood. The party had come out with its youth manifesto but with picture of the Golden Temple along with its election symbol broom. Perhaps it was not confident that this manifesto would appeal to the young voters. The manifesto was lost and none is now talking about it. Even otherwise, there was nothing much to talk about it.
And the third desperate person is state Congress chief Capt. Amarinder Singh who is waiting for the announcement from his high command of being chief minister designate to command his last battle. He is a soldier but surrounded but his own faithful, the faithful to His Royal Highness rather than the Congress president. He used to be brand in himself but this time, he has opted for a strategic manager to guide him as to what to do and how to approach the people. He might have forgotten it having been out of power for nine and a half years. It is not only just his last fight but also that of the Punjab Congress. Another defeat and the party would be wiped out like in many other states.
Both for AAP and the Congress, Punjab is the route to Red Fort. Historically, it is Punjab that had been the route to Hindustan for the invaders from Central Asia and Afghanistan. Kejriwal’s agenda is to wipe out the Congress like in Delhi. That way, he has a common cause with the Bharatiya Janata Party.
Harinder Singh Khalsa, the rebel AAP MP from Fatehgarh Sahib has gone to the extent of attacking Kejriwal as the RSS Man. After all, AAP is the product of Anna Hazare’s anti-corruption movement that was designed and supported by the people associated with the Saffron Brigade. Drawing such a conclusion is not illogical. Now none talks about corruption. This issue is getting phased out from the national political discourse as the BJP is back to its divisive political agenda. Let people get lynched. The Saffron Brigade has taken upon itself to set even the kitchen menu of the 120 cr people that really is a stupendous task and these people should be appreciated for that.
These desperate people would continue to betray their desperation at least for three months more by which time the candidates of all the three outfits might be announced. Then there would be spoilers.
Presently, all three are equally desperate. The people are also desperate this time.