Is it rapprochement time for political bigwigs estranged from their parent outfits? Both Kalyan Singh and Amar Singh are moving heaven and earth to stage a return to the BJP and the SP respectively. The two have a lot in common, though they are perceived as being poles apart ideologically. The parallel: both, at one point of time, enjoyed the most coveted position in their organisations till they were unceremoniously shown the door, following which they chose to float their own outfits. These turned out to be miserable flop shows.
Both had also irritated their peers by promoting women. Kalyan left no stone unturned in hoisting up Kusum Rai, who rose from political non-entity to a position of prominence in the BJP for whom she is currently a Rajya Sabha MP. Amar airlifted yesteryear cinestar Jayaprada from her home in Andhra Pradesh to the political arena of Rampur, from where she became the SP’s representative in the Lok Sabha. Kusum’s meteoric rise from small-time party worker was unpalatable to most BJP partymen, while Jayaprada was an eyesore for vociferous senior SP leader Azam Khan, who’d stood by Mulayam Singh since the party’s early days.
Kalyan managed to gain re-entry into the BJP in 2004 when he swore to bring the party back to the centrestage of UP politics. But after making no difference to the BJP tally in the 2007 state assembly election, he made another inglorious exit just before the 2009 Lok Sabha polls. And fell back into Mulayam’s arms once more. Mulayam imagined he would get the votes of Kalyan’s Lodh community. Kalyan won the seat from Etah, but the handshake proved dear for Mulayam as it alienated Muslims (Kalyan was once a Ramjanmabhoomi movement hero and UP chief minister when the Babri Masjid was demolished). After the SP tally in the Lok Sabha plummeted from 35 seats in 2004 to 22 in 2009, Mulayam promptly severed ties again and apologised to Muslims. Which is why Kalyan is desperate to get back to the BJP. Fellow Lodh and Hindutva icon Uma Bharati is lobbying for him, but many in the party are opposed to giving him another chance.
Similar arguments are being articulated in the SP against Amar Singh, who has, rather late in the day, realised the futility of trying to carve out a Thakur fiefdom of his own. Mulayam, sources say, is ready to forgive and forget as Amar lobbyists (including a prominent Noida-based industrialist and a powerful IAS officer) have told the venerable leader that he needs a fixer to realise his long-cherished desire to become PM in 2014.
Mulayam had a major fraud and laundering case against Amar dropped, paving the way for his return. But Azam Khan who’d once opposed Kalyan’s entry, is now doing the same with Amar, reminding Mulayam that Amar was the Kalyan votary in the old SP. Kalyan shot back: “It wasn’t Amar Singh who asked me and my son to join SP in 2009; Mulayam personally came to my house in Delhi to strike a deal.” Will realpolitik trump all?
Thank you to all those who have taken the trouble to read the article and share their thoughts. Out of the arguments made here, there are two that perhaps need answering. So here they go.
1. The first part of the article compares outcomes (relative percentages of population of the religions concerned) irrespective of the process that led to those outcomes - whether immigration, relatively faster population growth or conversions. This was for two reasons. One, to put the figure of 2.3 per cent in "numerical perspective", as the article itself explained. The second reason was that outcomes are ultimately what the crux of debate is about. The rest of the article in any case dealt with process - or conversions in this case, from both a contemporary and historical perspective.
2. Some commenters have tried to cast doubts on the reliability of Census 2001. Those who do this should bear in mind that Census 2001 was conducted by a BJP government. Considering the extreme importance that BJP gives to this issue, it would be reasonable to expect that IF it had perceived a problem with the methodology that was distorting the numbers, it would have fixed it. As the article mentioned, BJP or BJP-supported governments have been in power for 10 of the last 40 years, or about a quarter of the time, and the only reasonable conclusion one can arrive at is that any misreporting of numbers, real or perceived, would be marginal and hence, not of importance.
To all other arguments made, my answer is the following: Please read the article again, with particular focus on the quotations of Vivekananda and Monier Williams, and the history of the missionary efforts in Bengal and their outcome.
Both the politicians have finally realised that without the support from an established political party, they stand nowhere even if they try and form their own outfits. And in the present scenario, the BJP has been trying hard to regain its lost voters' base in UP while Mulayam Singh wishes to fulfil his PM's dream at all cost. Amr Singh may not boast of his mass-support yet he possesses master-managing skills, which are desperately needed by Mulayam in the future. However, both the BJP and SP are likely to further alienate their voters by inducting Kalyan and Amar Singh respectively due to consequential infighting and rebellion within these parties .
Behind every failure of a Successful politician
there is another women.
We at Outlookindia.com welcome feedback and your comments, including scathing criticism
1. Scathing, passionate, even angry critiques are welcome, but please do not indulge in abuse and invective. Our Primary concern is to keep the debate civil. We urge our users to try and express their disagreements without being disagreeable. Personal attacks are not welcome. No ad hominem please.
2. Please do not post the same message again and again in the same or different threads
3. Please keep your responses confined to the subject matter of the article you are responding to. Please note that our comments section is not a general free-for-all but for feedback to articles/blogs posted on the site
4. Our endeavour is to keep these forums unmoderated and unexpurgated. But if any of the above three conditions are violated, we reserve the right to delete any comment that we deem objectionable and also to withdraw posting privileges from the abuser. Please also note that hate-speech is punishable by law and in extreme circumstances, we may be forced to take legal action by tracing the IP addresses of the poster.
5. If someone is being abusive or personal, or generally being a troll or a flame-baiter, please do not descend to their level. The best response to such posters is to ignore them and send us a message at Mail AT outlookindia DOT com with the subject header COMPLAINT
6. Please do not copy and paste copyrighted material. If you do think that an article elsewhere has relevance to the point you wish to make, please only quote what is considered fair-use and provide a link to the article under question.
7. There is no particular outlookindia.com line on any subject. The views expressed in our opinion section are those of the author concerned and not that of all of outlookindia.com or all its authors.
8. Please also note that you are solely responsible for the comments posted by you on the site. The comments could be deleted or edited entirely at our discretion if we find them objectionable. However, the mere fact of their existence on our site does not mean that we necessarily approve of their contents. In short, the onus of responsibility for the comments remains solely with the authors thereof. Outlookindia.com or any of its group publications, may, however, retains the right to publish any of these comments, with or without editing, in any medium whatsoever. It is therefore in your own interest to be careful before posting.
9.Outlookindia.com is not responsible in any manner whatsoever for how any search engine -- such as Google, Bing etc -- caches or displays these comments. Please note that you are solely responsible for posting these comments and it is a privilege being granted to our registered users which can be withdrawn in case of abuse. To reiterate:
a. Comments once posted can only be deleted at the discretion of outlookindia.com
b. The comments reflect the views of the authors and not of outlookindia.com
c. outlookindia.com is not responsible in any manner whatsoever for the way search engines cache or display these comments
d. Please therefore take due caution before you post any comments as your words could potentially be used against you
10. We have an online thread for our comments policy:
You are welcome to post your suggestions here or in case you have a specific issue, to directly email us at Mail AT outlookindia DOT com with the subject header COMPLAINT