Indian parliamentary elections, 2024 : Modi charisma has gone

Amalendu Upadhyaya
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Historical significance of the Indian parliamentary elections, 2024

By Justice Markandey Katju

On first impression, the ongoing Indian parliamentary elections 2024 seems to be just another election. However, on deeper analysis it can be shown that it has a profound historical significance, not just for the Indian subcontinent but also for the entire world. Let me explain.

The aim of people living in the Indian subcontinent must be to transform their region into a mighty industrial giant, like USA or China, with its people enjoying a high standard of living. This goal can be attained only after a historical protracted united people's struggle led by modern minded leaders, like Mustafa Kemal of Turkey in the 1920s, or the leaders of Japan after the Meiji Restoration of 1868.

For the past 10 years India has been under the grip of a right wing theocratic government led by the Hindu-oriented BJP, which has been polarising Indian society on religious lines, for getting votes. This government has a clear majority in the Lok Sabha ( the lower House of the Indian Parliament ), with 303 out of the total 545 seats in the House on its own, and with the NDA alliance ( of which it is the leading member ) having 353 seats.

With this overwhelming majority, the Central Government, using its security and intellgence agencies, could crush any united people's struggle before it could become any threat to its rule. Hence no powerful people's struggle for the emancipation of India from poverty, unemployment, hunger, lack of healthcare etc and for making India a modern, highly industrialised state, could arise.

The situation has now changed, and the Modi charisma has gone 
Most opinion polls in India are predicting that in the 2024 elections the BJP's seats in the Lok Sabha will be considerably reduced.

Some have predicted that though the NDA alliance may have a bare majority in the House, the BJP by itself will not. Some have predicted that the NDA alliance and the opposition INDIA alliance will each have about 250 seats, with the BJP having only about 210-220 seats.

Some say that not only is there is no Modi wave, there is in fact an anti-Modi wave.

The correct picture will of course emerge on June 4th when the results will be declared. However, there is no doubt that Modi and the BJP, even if returned to power, will be considerably weaker than before.

This therefore will lay the groundwork, and enable, a mighty united people's struggle led by patriotic modern minded leaders to arise in India. This historical struggle will no doubt be long and arduous, probably lasting 10-15 years, in which tremendous sacrifices will have to be made, before success can be achieved.

Though by itself the parliamentary elections will have no immediate impact on the lives of the people, its significance lies in the fact that after the elections at least the process of India's transformation into a modern, highly industrialised state by a mighty people's struggle will have begun.

And once India becomes a highly industrialised giant, the whole world scenario will change ( as Napoleon said about China ).

(Justice Katju is a former Judge, of the Supreme Court of India, and former Chairman, the Press Council of India. The views expressed are his own)

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