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Millennium Post

What keeps Modi going?

Who is the most hated politician in India today? The other way of putting the same question is: who is the most popular politician in India now? If the answers to the two different versions of the burning political question end with the same name – Narendra Modi, the upstart chief minister of Gujarat - one must pause and ponder. Why is Narendra Modi the most hated political figure to an important segment and why is he so popular with people less endowed with intellectual, financial and social prowess that Modi critics have?

 There are many reasons for which we are supposed to hate Narendra Modi. Many might have objection to the sequences of the items listed here but mostly these are the complaints against the popular chief minister from Gujarat, whose rise is an unfortunate development in our great country.
Modi speaks. He speaks too well and attracts too many in the audience. Some brainless followers of the divisive personality assume that the crowd is an indication of his popularity. What they fail to realise that even ‘circus shows fetch good crowd’. The crowd must not overwhelm one. More important, in a poor country it is easy to pay and make the poor come for a meeting. Clearly Modi is a clown in a circus called politics where people are paid to come and watch. No wonder avid followers of leaders who cannot pay to gather a crowd – take Rahul Gandhi for instance – have every reason to hate Modi.

But more than the speeches, crowd and circus what makes the thinking types suspicious of Narendra Modi is the hidden ‘forces driving his present’. To put it more clearly for the brainless types, one is wary of the role of RSS and its sister organizations. In any case BJP, too, is a sister organization of RSS. If the dumbs just recall the past of Narendra Modi one will understand the reasons for discomfort of the non-brainless types over Modi circuses. Listen to his speeches, howsoever waste of time these are, listen for a change. And see how cleverly he omits to unravel his true self. Just by hearing him the dumbs forget that this man was ever held guilty in the court of the brainy ones for unmentionable crimes. Modi’s ability to metamorphose, at least in his speeches, is a reason for the thinking-types to hate him.

The analytic minds can easily see through the game. ‘Narendra Modi, whenever he speaks he makes all those (relevant and critical) concerns irrelevant. He holds you in thrall with the ease of a consummate showman and makes you, at least till the show is on, believe him.’ This brings us to a point no less important. ‘If speeches made leaders, then Modi would easily be the tallest leader in the country.’ How could we ever forget the great speeches of Adolf Hitler? Does the experience not prove conclusivelythat ‘a leader is much more than oratorical flourish’? The root cause for Modi’s popularity among the lesser of the humanity – the Indian variety – is the prime reason why an intellectually abled person will hate Mr. Modi.

Take a look at the most critical factor in Modi. He is a polarizing force. He polarizes Indian polity sharply in two clearly divided camps – his supporters and his detractors. We have seen the nature of his supporters – poor, uneducated, ignorant people who come to Modi-circuses after getting paid for the visit. In contrast the detractors weigh more in terms of intellect, wealth, communication ability and reach. Like the German leader in the 1930s Modi hypnotises his audience but mostly with criticisms. He is in opposition. For him it is easy to find faults with those who deliver. Does Modi have any agenda for growth? Has he mentioned how he would solve the problems facing our country?

Did we hear some one mumbling Gujarat model of growth? This is what happens when one is not properly educated. The figures Modi mentions are all wrong. Use different yardsticks for growth, the social sector indicators for instance, and one will find how hollow is Gujarat model for development. Did we not have a refined report from the former chief economist of India, which had thoroughly deflated the so-called achievement of Gujarat? To fathom the intricacies of economic data one must have to be properly trained. Did the lone Nobel-laureate economist from India ever go overboard with such cooked up data? Only someone who never was considered fit to win the coveted prize acknowledged Modi’s governance. Who should we trust? Who is more illustrious between the two – Bhagwati and Sen?

Finally listen to many other successful leaders of the country. They mentioned time and again, as Bihar’s Nitish Kumar did in Mumbai on Saturday last, that ‘progress could be achieved only by binding everyone.’  The illustrious chief minister further said that the ‘effort being made today to create certain atmosphere in the country won’t last long.’ Any growth model that leave out some and do not bind all must fail. Since Modi’s growth model increases the ‘division’ by not acknowledging the religious divide and also by talking of the majority one must suspect his intention. Who is the majority in this country? Could it be only the poor? Aren’t there others who need attention as well? Can we simply ignore the minority? Here lies the problem of the brainless ones. They feel that the minority interest is the interest of the haves. They feel that there should be reorientation of policies so that the minority rich can enjoy the lion’s share of the nation’s wealth. How will somebody who used to sell tea as a boy realize the suffering of those who descend from their comfortable existences to serve the poor?

Had the Modi admirers been endowed with brain and analytical power, they all would have loved to hate him.

The author is a communication consultant
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