Initially he came, he saw, he conquered. Then he fought, he sulked, he withdrew. Veteran Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader L. K. Advani has definitely been undergoing mood swings.
In his hey days, he was a conqueror. Then his popularity slowly began to dwindle. Currently, he fought to be the BJP Prime Ministerial candidate. Then, when he reluctantly accepted the reality that he can never be the PM, there were noises about Narendra Modi being pitched from Gandhinagar – Advani’s constituency from where he had won five times. Reacting to this situation, Advani said that he would like to contest from Bhopal. No sooner had he expressed this desire, the party workers were rallying around him requesting him to contest from Gandhinagar. The way humans work! Finally Advani gets Gandhinagar, while Modi settles for Vadodara, his second seat, the first being Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh.
If we turn around and draw a parallel between this situation and to Advani’s dream of being a PM, then it makes one wonder – Was it Advani’s burning desire to be the Prime Minister that was his undoing? If Advani had shown reluctance to be the Prime Minister, would the party have considered him as an apt Prime Ministerial candidate? History has been witness to such cases. For instance, it was a reluctant Sonia Gandhi who had joined the Congress party in 1997 and then went on to become the Party President, the Leader of Opposition and almost the Prime Minister in 2004. Reluctance works or so it seems!
In reply to Modi’s candidature in Varanasi, the Congress is likely to field party General Secretary and former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Digvijay Singh. Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari may contest from Ludhiana.
The parties who have also released their lists are Trinamool Congress (TMC), Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and BJP. TMC has pitched Umesh Mishra from Rae Bareli constituency and Madan Mohan Mishra from Azamgarh. AAP has released names for Kerala, Jammu and Kashmir, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar and Maharashtra. Still no news about AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal’s seat.
The BJP has fielded Olympian Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore from Jaipur and actor Hema Malini from Mathura constituency.
In another development, father disowns the son, literally!!! DMK party Chief M. Karunanidhi had earlier suspended his own son M.K. Alagiri from the party and had denied him the ticket. Now, he has gone one step ahead and asked party members to distance themselves from Alagiri. In case they try to get in touch with him, then disciplinary action can be taken against them. Alagiri who represented Madurai constituency since 2009 was denied ticket this year and the rivalry between him and his younger brother M. K. Stalin has only deepened. Stalin, who is considered the second most important leader after Karunanidhi, has been eating into Alagiri’s vote bank.
As the election nears, the politicians develop peculiar behaviour – they begin to eat into each other’s votes, they bite into each other’s share, they get into each other’s shoes…God help us all.
Talking about behaviour, election is also a season for marriages and divorces. Political parties suddenly don the role of prospective brides and grooms. Imagine BJP’s Rajnath Singh as the aggressive groom and NCP’s Sharad Pawar as a not-so-coy bride. Well, this situation might have happened if Sharad Pawar had not rejected the alliance saying his party will never ally with BJP and that BJP would never get the required numbers to form the government.
After snapping ties with former ally AIADMK, the Communist Party of India (CPI) and Communist Party of India (Marxist) have decided to face the polls together. Both the CPI and CPI (M) released their lists today.
How can the day end without quotes from Kejriwal! Kejriwal has predicted that AAP will win about 100 seats this election. He said that the government that will be formed will not be a stable one and the country will go to elections again within a year or two. He also slammed Modi saying he has blood stained hands and there has been no development in Gujarat. He added that the country is faced with grave threat. Who is a threat to whom? Only time will tell.
If Kejriwal is angry, External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid is livid. He questioned, “ How can Modi be given a clean chit?” He continued, “A magistrate’s court not summoning him is a big accomplishment for him. It is like a nursery child who gets good marks and thinks he has become a doctor.” Needless to say, there have been numerous reactions to this statement from the Opposition.
Guess the number of complaints Election Commission has received on Model Code of Conduct violations! About 55,000!!! Can you beat that? And action has been taken on 52,000 cases. The complaints mainly revolved around defacement of about 34,000 public properties and about 20,000 private properties.
The EC has also issued a detailed guideline for political advertisements on social media platforms. Proper permissions will have to be obtained before any type of content is put up in the public domain. The EC has also directed social networking sites to maintain records of expenditure incurred on advertisement by political parties.
Talking about social media, Modi tops the list as the most searched for Chief Minister on Google. Well, at least in the virtual world, Modi is an undisputed “ India’s Most Wanted” leader. It is a different story that in the real world too, he is often termed as “India’s Most Wanted” for various other reasons.
Will he be able to continue topping the Google list? Wait and watch with us as we unravel the General Elections 2014 story every day.