Opposition Unity in India

Amalendu Upadhyaya
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By Justice Markandey Katju

Parliamentary elections will be held in 2024, and many Opposition parties are trying to forge an alliance against the ruling BJP.

15 Opposition Parties & 6 CMs met recently in Patna to discuss a common strategy for the coming parliamentary elections

It was decided that they will meet again in July 10-12 in Shimla, the attempt probably being to devise a common strategy for fielding a single candidate against the BJP candidates in the coming elections.

But BJP MP Sushil Modi said, “This is a ‘Gathbandhan of Thugs’. They are preparing to fool the country. They have no principle, or policy and all are involved in corruption ”

A joint press conference was held by the opposition parties after the meeting.

I am no supporter of the BJP ( nor of any political party in India ), but this attempt of opposition unity reminds me of the Janata Party which was formed in 1977, and came to power after the parliamentary elections following lifting of Emergency. This party had only one objective : defeating and ousting Indira Gandhi from power. It had no other common principle.

After attaining this objective the constituent members of this new party started fighting each other, and ultimately the party broke up in 1979, fresh elections called in 1980, in which Indira Gandhi won and again came to power.

Similarly, the parties which met in Patna have only one objective : ousting the BJP from power.  Their professed ‘secularism’  was with an eye on the large Muslim vote bank, not for any genuine concern for the welfare of Muslims, and other than that there was nothing else in common. There is no common principle, just as there was none in the Janata party. The only thing in common is desire for power and pelf.

I have said several times that the solution to India’s massive problems of poverty, unemployment, malnourishment, price rise, lack of proper healthcare and good education, etc lie outside the system of parliamentary democracy.

All these opposition political parties in India, as also the ruling BJP. are

within the system. Hence they cannot solve any of the abovementioned huge problems. Whether the BJP is in power or a Congress led coalition, the difference will be that of Tweedledum and Tweedledee.

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