DMK – Dynasty of M Karunanidhi
The election results surprised everyone and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh , emerged stronger than ever before . With numbers in hand , he seemed to open his second innings as PM with more confidence , less interference from bullying , blackmailing regional small parties .
But life is not that easy after all , right ?
So the spanner was thrown in the otherwise seemingly smooth government formation by Congress’s old , trusted ally “ DMK ( Dravida Munetra Kazhagam ) the strong party of Tamil Nadu. DMK with 18 members wanted to extract its pound of flesh like in 2004 , forgetting the fact that Congress in 2009 is bit different from how it was in the previous 5 year’s governance.
So what we have ? A fight of egos , arrogance , and authority and power.
For DMK and its head M Karunanidhi , DMK now stands for Dynasty of M Karunanidhi. Daughter Kanimozhi , Son M K Azhagiri , Grand nephew , Dayanidhi maran all have won the election and would have to be inducted in the new government. ( not to forget the CM in waiting , younger son M K Stalin , making it a complete dynasty party ) . If all three of them are inducted , there would be noises within party and from opposition for making a family cabinet in the centre at the cost of other candidates. So , he needs to induct other senior leaders like TR Balu and A Raja , who were ministers in the previous government just to make sure it is not just a family cabinet representing DMK. So it needs more cabinet berths , Simple.
For Congress , Post results have surprised itself and they definitely would not want to be bullied by other parties. Last five years was definitely a tough time for them , balancing the egos , ambitions , selfishness of their allies and managing the full term. With new confidence and mandate , they are in no mood to be bullied this time around too . So bowing to DMK , would give out a wrong signal to other allies. So DMK has to be checked , simple. After all , DMK government in TN is supported by Congress’s 35 members . So DMK would not make any extreme step to rock their government in state. Stalemate. That is what we have , with Congress having the upper hand , albeit little discomfiture.
DMK has decided to stay away from the government ( at least as of now when am writing this post ) Am sure , they would be now regretting the over the board tough stance they took and going in public very soon of their intention to stay out of government.DMK would have been taken by surprise congress’s tough stance. After all , the good old wily politician that he is – Karunanidhi , sure knows what it means by being part of Government and staying out of it .
For Karunanidhi , Blood is thicker than party but for once , he failed to gauge the pulse of 2009 .
TGIPB – Part 11 : The Final Battle , the end game
The Great Indian Political Battle
The Final phase of polling.
10.8 Crore electorate
0.12 million polling station
0.5 million polling staff
7 states & 2 UT
( Parts of Jammu & Kashmir , Punjab , UP , West Bengal , and whole of Himachal Pradesh , Tamil nadu , Uttarkhand , Pondichery and Chandigargh )
Key contestants : P Chidambaram , Mamtha Bannerjee , Varun Gandhi , Menaka Gandhi , Jaya Pradha , Mohammed Azharudin , Mani Shankar Aiyar , Dayanidhi Maran , Sajjad lone.
My Interesting battles : Varun Gandhi , Menaka Gandhi , Jaya Pradha , Sajjad Lone( ofcourse due to all the controversies generated , though the win of the first two are almost certain , the victory margin would make a good analysis )
The final phase is a keenly watched battle for me as Tamil nadu is my native state. The battle is this southern battle is spearheaded by the two rival parties : DMK and ADMK , one headed by old will seasoned politician M Karunanidhi and the other by the never say die battle hardened charismatic women politician J Jayalalitha , popularly called “Amma” . 39 states of TN would be a crucial block for any new government formation and this time “Amma” is poised to sweep the majority of the numbers and avenging her humiliating complete rout last time that send her into almost political hibernation for 5 years.
Back in Kashmir , the separatist leader , Sajjad Lone defying the warnings of other separatist has taken a positive step of battling it out in democratic way. I welcome his decision . Democracy has a solution for all problems and hope this would make a positive impact for the republic of India.
So the battle finally comes to its end game. Whole India would be waiting for the D-day that is 16th may , when the results would pour in , along with heartburns , victory smiles , anguish , despair and with that the hunt for allies to reach the magical number of 272 to form the new government.
Kaun banega the new PM of 1 billion plus population ? Lets wait for a few more days.
Last few weeks , NDA seems to have gathered a bit of steam but will it translate to votes and victories ? we have to wait for 16th..
Left seem to have reconciled to their not so great performance in election 2009 and have already made small voices of supporting congress to keep the BJP away .. so will they support the Congress yet again ? Again the answer will be on 16th .. If they finally support Congress , am sure they will block Manmohan singh’s second term as PM. So who will be the new PM , incase Congress comes back to power ?
Will the dream of Mayawati and Jayalalitha , Sharad Pawar for the PM chair come true as a wild card candidate ?
For all that numerous questions and probabilities , the answer lies on 16th May.
Lets , wait and watch and write and read.
TGIPB : Part 10 – The Fourth Battle
May 7 , 2009
The Great Indian Political Battle
4th phase of Indian General Election .
7 states and National Capital Territory ( Delhi )
95 million voters
0.13 million polling station
0.6 million polling staffs
All the seats of Delhi , Rajasthan and Haryana and one seat in J & K and part of Punjab , UP , Bihar , and West Bengal goes to poll today.
Key Contestants :
Lalu Prasad Yadav , Mulayam Singh Yadav , Pranab Mukherjee, Rajnath Singh , Farooq Abdullah , Shatrugan sinha , Sachin Pilot .
Interesting battles :
- The fate of Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal’s daughter-in-law , Harsimrat Kaur and son of former CM Amarinder Singh , Raninder Singh will be decided today on a direct fight for family honor in Bhatinda.
- BJP President Rajnath Singh is sweating it out in Ghaziabad , UP . Its important to note that Rajnath Singh has taken a risk by contesting in a constituency not highly favorable to him in caste equation .
TGIPB : Part 9 – The Third Battle
The Great Indian Political Battle
April 30 , 2009
Third Phase of Election.
9 states and 2 Union territories
( Jammu and Kashmir , UP , MP , Maharashtra , Gujarat , Karnataka , Bihar , Sikkim Dadra & Nagar haveli , Daman & Diu )
144 million voters
0.17 million polling stations
Key Contestants : Sonia Gandhi , HD Deve Gowda , Jaswant Singh , LK Advani.
A crucial phase for BJP , would be hoping to get rich dividends from the states of Karnataka , Gujarat , MP , Bihar and Maharashtra .
Activist and dancer Mallika Sarabhai is contesting as Independent in Gandhinagar , pitting herself against heavy weight BJP’s current numero uno LK Advani .In spite of the rubble and noise and bits and bytes , I don’t think she will be able to make a big dent on the record of LK Advani in his constituency .
The result I would be eager to see is in Dakshin Kannada . After the recent untoward incidence caused by Sri Ram sena activists and the subsequent Pink chaddi campaigns and the church attacks , definitely mangalore belt is an area to watch and what direction they will make would be keenly followed by many including yours bloggingly !
On a dismal note , the voters turn out in Mumbai was pathetically low . I would have liked the mumbaikars stepping out in large numbers and vote their rights and make a statement on the terrorism issue. After all , they have seen a lot , felt a lot , been affected a lot by terrorism . Mumbaikars , sorry folks , you lost a golden lesson to teach the politicians.
TGIPB – Part 8 : The Second battle and my vote
The Great Indian Political Battle – The Second phase
April 23 , 2009
195 million eligible voters.
2,22,350 polling stations
Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Goa, Jammu and Kashmir, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Orissa, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh and Jharkhand
Key Contestants : Rahul Gandhi , Sharad Pawar , Sushma Swaraj , HD Kumaraswamy , Captain Gopinath , Ananth Kumar
This second phase of election is memorable for me for the sole reason , I casted my vote for the first time. So was I thrilled ? Yep ! Me and my wife got up around 7 , had garam ginger chai and went to caste our votes. The polling booth is quiet near to our place . There were many booths made , so there was not much crowd and it was a smooth event and I pressed the button and got the ink on my finger as a proof of voting ! Whom did we vote ? I pressed the button for BJP while my wife clicked Congress. so 50 : 50 verdict !
Bangalore votes :
So Bangalore being my adopted city now , I had enrolled in the voters list and casted my vote in Bangalore north constituency. To be frank , I was disappointed with the contestants of Bangalore north. Though my voting affiliation is with BJP , the candidate was a big let down. BJP has fielded Chandre Gowda , who defected from Congress just few weeks back. The 70 plus candidate who quit last minute to grab the BJP ticket got my vote in spite of my disliking for the political opportunism he displayed. Well , its another fact that politics and opportunism goes hand in glove but reality bites. Some of my friends asked my why I root for BJP , allegedly “ communal ” party , Well , would write a post on that some day soon. Congress has fielded yet another good old Jaffer Sharief . After delimitation , I think it would be a tough call to predict the winner in Bangalore north.
Bangalore South has impressive candidates . Ananth Kumar , the three time MP and the number two in the power hierarchy of Karnataka BJP is facing Krishan Byre Gowda , a young seemingly impressive candidate from Congress . To add excitement to the already active young list of candidates is Captain Gopinath , the Deccan aviation chief. Captain may not win the seat but am interested to see how much he would fly the electoral race. I am also eager to see , If the hype that was build around Byre Gowda would match the confident Ananth Kumar. Tough fight in cards !
Bangalore rural sees “farmer “ Deve Gowda’s Son HD Kumaraswamy seeking revenge on “Giant killer ” Tejeswani Gowda , who stunned everyone last time by defeating Gowda Senior. Other day , I followed the Tejeswani on a local channel and was impressed by the lady’s energy and campaign . I would like to see her defeat Gowda Jr but then again it would be a tough battle ..
Assembly Election :
Orissa and AP also have their state assembly election alongside. So its time for voters to review Naveen Patnaik and YSR . Chiranjeevi is contesting from Tirupati and also Chandra babu naidu hoping his grand alliance will push him back to limelight. Lets wait and watch ..
TGIPB – Part 7 : The battle begins
More than 75 million votes cast out of 143.1 million strong electorate.
Over 300,000 EVMs used
The first phase of The Great Indian Election kick started today .
Today’s battle will decide the fate of key contestants : Lalu Prasad Yadav , Murli Manohar Joshi , Yashwant Singh , Renuka Chowdhary , Shashi Tharoor , Praful Patel , K Chandresekar Rao and S Jaipal Reddy.
The first phase included the naxal infected areas and predictably there were naxal attacks on few pockets that sadly took away 17 lives.
According to news agencies Polling was reportedly lower when compared to the previous elections.
Quote of the day :
We are sweeping the polls in Bihar.
- Lalu Prasad Yadav
Man ! We should take a leaf of positive thinking from these politicians !!!
On the day the real battle started and the voters had their ink on their hand as a mark of casting votes , BJP’s latest poster boy Varun Gandhi was released from jail by Supreme court. Mr.Gandhi , Mind your language please !
The result am eager to know : Sashi Tharoor.
Heavy weight battle :
Lalu Prasad Yadav (RJD) Vs Rajiv Pratap Rudy (BJP)
MM Joshi (BJP) Vs Mukthar Ansari (BSP)
My safe bet : Renuka Chowdhary ( Congress )is going to bite dust in the poll.
Finally , I can Vote !
Reading the title , don’t be misled that I just got eligible to vote ! Though its been many donkey years that I had gone pass the legally eligible voting age of 18 , its only this year I got my name included in the electoral list ! well , better late than never , isn’t it ?
After wasting my right to vote for so many years , I finally decided to be a responsible citizen . So few months back , I went and collected the Form- 6 for including my name in the electoral list. The form was as good as Greek and German for me as it was typed in Kannada language. I kept it aside , hoping to fill it someday with the help of somebody. I totally forgot about it , with many other issues and sub issues and no issues but laziness to blame !
One day , Jaago Re guys woke me up ! Their campaign on net and TV reactivated the ‘responsibility’ gene in me. I logged in to their website and dutifully filled my details as well as my wife’s detail . Thanks to Jaago Re team , 5 minutes of keying in , my Form – 6 was ready and emailed to me ! They had even mentioned the office address where I have to submit it .
So armed with the printed copy of the Form – 6 , I went to the Voters Facilitation
Centre in our area. There were two queues . One long one and another short . I was told the short one is for submitting the new application. 5 minutes wait . My application was submitted. I was happy ! Things went smooth after all . I was told to come after 15 days to check if my name is included or not . Once included , I could get my EPIC ( Electors Photo Identity Card )
I was thrilled that am going to cast my first vote ! Recently in Rajasthan assembly election State PCC president , CP Joshi lost the seat by just one vote so who knows my one vote could be the decisive one too !
Exactly after 15 days , I went to the Voters Facilitation Centre to check if my name is included are not in the list . When I went there , there was one very long queue .. Instead of standing in queue , I went near the counter to see if there is any notice over there that could give me bit of some information . There was to be no information. I was in double mind , should I stand in queue or not . I asked one person , who walked down from the counter , what his submission date is . His was some date earlier to me. I talked to few others and came to know those who submitted before my date of submission only have not got their name included yet in their list . So people stood for many hours only to see , if their name is included or not !!! If only the election commission has made the process easy by putting a notice that applications received till so and so date has been included , things would have been easy and people would not have to wait hours just to be told to come on later date. It could in fact speed up matters for them too. Anyways , I walked back without standing in queue.
I went twice after that only to find still bigger queue. I decided to go on weekend. Two weekends , I slept off . By the time I woke up , there was double bigger queue waiting for me in the centre.
Finally , someone said April 8th is the last date , so I decided I would brave the crowd and check my status . Since they open the counter at 8 , I decided to go by 6:30 only , hoping to beat the queue. By the time I kicked my lazy ass and managed to reach there , it was 7:30 and i was greeted by some 200 people waiting ahead of me ! I cursed myself but then decided to join the patience club. It was one truly secular queue ! With people of all gender, caste , creed , religion and social strata waiting patiently , all for the sake of Indian democracy ! Some sensible ones had bought along newspapers , books , water cans and even tiffin ! Thank God , I carried my earphone so i got hooked to Illayaraja’s tunes stocked in my mobile!
India is the global back office when it comes to ITEs but our government agencies have their own way of providing ‘ prompt ’ services. There were two system to manage the huge queue and they took their own sweet time to process . Finally when my turn came , it was 12:40 noon ! 5 hours in queue ! I never had stood for so long in a queue till date but then I was happy to find out that my name was included in the electoral list and am eligible to cast my vote in this upcoming election !
Then the next issue was to get EPIC . I have to stand again for another 5 hours most probably and with only one more day left . I realized I will skip that anyways it is not mandatory to have EPIC to vote and if the name is included I can always furnish any one of other approved documents . So I decided to collect the EPIC later once the election is over and they restart the EPIC issuance .
I overhead many people complaining about how EC could have simplified the entire process of electoral process. Why others even I had my own share of advices for them to better the working process . But then later I realized , If EC has to be blamed , we public are also to be equally blamed. The whole process of Electoral name inclusion and EPIC is going on for many , many months much before the official election dates were announced. If we had cared to apply then , we could have avoided standing in huge queues ..
Anyways 5 hours of standing and now am armed with my vote power and looking forward to the next queue when I would be standing to cast my vote ! Am I thrilled ? Yes !!!
TGIPB – Part 6 : The Sho(e)cker !
The aim was wrong but the message was loud and clear. For the calm and polite Chidambaram , it was a press meet he would not forget and would be in public memory for a long period and for senior Journalist Jarnail Singh , it was a moment of
The smell of shoe was just a reaction and the original foul play smell started with CBI giving clean chit to Jagadish Tytler and Sajjan kumar in the Anti-Sikh riot of 1984 . What a timing ! With the election round the corner , probably Congress wanted to drive a point that they have untainted hands . It’s an unfortunate fact that CBI is reduced to a mere tool in the hands of ruling governments to twists and turn the facts for their convenience. Even if CBI gave a clean chit , Congress party who claims to be the guardian angel of secularism in India , should not have given LS tickets to Jagadish Tytler and Sajjan kumar , respecting the sentiments of the Sikh population. But does anyone listen ?
I heard some people say “ Pen is mightier than shoe " and what Jarnail Singh did was condemnable . Well , I agree that as a citizen of democratic nation , it was condemnable act but having said that let us also think from the other perspective. How effective would Jarnail Singh would have been , had he wrote an article in news paper condemning the CBI verdict and allowing the two person to contest election ? Few people would have read or even many but it would not have made any difference.
So it required an intentionally misaimed shoe missile to bring the issue to the mainstream and public conscience . Hope congress learnt its lesson and at least mend its mistakes and withdraw the candidature of Jagadish tytler and Sajjan Kumar.
- At the end of the episode , both Chidambaram and Jarnail Singh won my appreciation though . When I say Chidambaram , I meant Chidambaram as a person and not a congress man.
- I really appreciate the way PC regained his composure swiftly and asked the journalist to be evacuated gently. He did not file any complaint and the journalist was freed within one hour .
- Jarnail Singh for the calculated act knowing the risk involved . He did regret his act later saying the issue he raised was right but the method of doing was wrong but he did made his point loud and clear. He is a senior journalist and he did came out as a hero.
Minutes after the incident , I was telling couple of my friends that Akali Dal will grab this opportunity and would offer Jarnail Singh LS seat and they did offered ! Politicians !!
Lallu Dozer :
There was another story that developed few days back , when Lalu prasad yadav joined this election season’s elite “ foot in the mouth club " of politicians gone berserk with mindless talk .
If I were the country’s home minister , and if Varun had sait this , then I would have run a roller over his chest , and thought about the consequences later
- Lalu Pradad Yadav
Well , Mr. Yadav , is their any difference between you and Varun now ? Nah.
Amar Singh’s Googly :
Well , Amar Singh tested a googly on his own party chief Mulayam Singh , when he threatened to quit the party protesting Mulayam’s bias for his rival Azam khan. This outburst came as a surprise for me because I always thought Amar Singh had the remote of Mulayam Singh. That Amar Singh soon made a statement that he would rather leave the world than leave his party is another typical filmy dialogue so typical of our politicians !
TGIPB – Part 5 : Movers and Shakers
The Great Indian Political Battle – Part 4
- A front within a front . SP , RJD , LJP has cuddled up to form a mini front within the UPA. The 3 musketeers have decided to forge an alliance and contest in UP and Bihar and maximize their bargaining power in the post poll scenario. In the era of coalition , you are respected by seat ammunition you have , so you cannot rather blame the “fourth front “ within the front . After all its a survival of fittest ! Well for congress , they have to live with it. Going is tough for them this election , with all their erstwhile alliance partners snubbing them “left” and “right” !
- Third front must be really on cloud number nine in the build up to the election. Things are pretty much going great for the salad front. The players of the front are sure going to be the king makers in the post election scenario , though the egos and personal ambition of the players are so high that a united third front government is a difficult proposition and even if they manage a government , for it to last its full term is next to impossible.
- Thanks to Supreme court , Chiranjeevi’s Praja Rajyam party in Andhra pradesh and Vijayakant’s DMDK in Tamil nadu have their own respective election symbols . Railway engine for PRP and Two Drums for DMDK. Am keenly looking forward to the assembly election in AP because of the political debut of Chiranjeevi. Gone are those days when NTR and MGR swept the polls in their debut converting their fan following of cinema into votes. Chiranjeevi will not be able to make that kind of political debut but still am sure he will emerge as a king maker in the AP assembly.
- Now lets come to our maratha strongman and the eternally optimistic Sharad Pawar. He gave a nightmare to Cognress for few days when he was reportedly planning to share the dias with CPI(M)’s Prakash karat in Orrisa where NCP has alliance with BJD. Last minute though , he changed his mind and gave a statement his party is with UPA and he has no prime ministerial ambition. Well , these days everyone knows left is right and right is left in politics and what matters finally is the Centre !
- The election manifestos are out and I would write about the high promises of different parties in another post exclusively for it.
- This Election season’s new poster boy Varun Gandhi is resting behind bars thanks to the National Security Act slammed on him by Mayawati. Maneka Gandhi and Mayawati enacted a verbal duel typical of women leads of Indian TV serials . Menaka Gandhi was denied a chance to see her son in jail and she vented out
Menaka Gandhi : “ Maywati is not mother that’s why she would not understand a mother’s pain "
Mayawati : “ Menaka forgets that even without being a mother you can understand pain of a million people just like Mother Teresa did. Menaka is so absorbed in love for her one son that she forgot that if there were any communal riots over Varun Gandhi’s statement many mothers would have lost their sons “
Menaka Gandhi : "Mother Teresa would never have got someone murdered on her birthday but it happened to an engineer," "Mother Teresa never indulged in corruption. Mayawati should learn a lesson from her "
Mayawati : “ Before making comments against me, Maneka should realise that senior leader of BJP Atal Bihari Vajapee the party on whose ticket she was contesting elections was also unmarried. Does she find any fault in Atal or she did not get proper support from him "
Well with this filmy dialogues enacted in our real political scene am signing off this TGIPB post . Do keep track of my election postings in future.
TGIPB – Part 4 : Cup of woes
As election nears , the cup of woes are overflowing for the two main national parties – BJP and Congress.
- BJP is figuring out means to damage control the Varun Gandhi episode. Meanwhile , the young Gandhi is firm on his stance that the CD containing his alleged hate speech is doctored. The issue would now likely go to courts . I am waiting to see if this entire controversy would hamper his Philibit candidature.
- The Congress party , who banked on a united face of UPA alliance , finds itself now the coalition in shambles pre-election. Lalu Prasad Yadav humiliated the Congress by giving 3 seats in Bihar and rubbing more salt to its wound by saying Congress is no entity in Bihar. Congress snubbed Lalu by hitting back in Jharkhand state by giving RJD only 2 seats . Furious RJD decided to contest in all seats in Jharkhand and Congress in turn decides to field candidates on its own in Bihar.
- The seat negotiation between Congress and SP ( Samajwadi Party ) led by Mulayam Singh Yadav has run into deadlock , with SP contesting on its own in all seats .
- Down South , PMK ( Patali Makal Katchi ) jumped fence to join the ADMK Camp. PMK infamous for changing its colors and crossing over , have proven yet again this time causing heartburn for already beleaguered UPA alliance. It may cost the congress alliance a few seats in Tamil Nadu.
Other than the BJP and Congress , others drinking their cup of woes are :
- Mulayam singh Yadav , who is alleged to have made a derogatory remarks against a District Magistrate. ( Tough time for Election Commission this season ! )
- Chiranjeevi , who is testing the electoral waters for the first time with his newly formed Praja Rajyam in Andhra Pradesh is desperate to see through that his party gets a uniform symbol to contest in all seats. ( I am keenly waiting to see how much his star power would translate into votes ! )
As the Election season heats up , there would definitely be more cups of woes to follow , I will update it as and when it happens …