As The Truth Unfolds…

May 23, 2016 OPINION/NEWS


Ananya S Guha

Everyone is now talking about the results of the elections in four or five states. Some have gone into a rigorous analysis about the victory of the BJP and the AGP in Assam, the loss of the Congress and the decimation of the Left Front in West Bengal.

Added to this is of course the comeback of the Left Front in Kerala. If one glances at the newspapers or the web magazines, articles normally revolve around the following: five reasons why the Congress lost, how Tarun Gogoi ensured victory for the BJP, some reasons why the Congress or the Left Front lost in West Bengal (the main being the unholy alliance there),etc. Then there are some articles which eulogize the Indian electorate- very intelligent, can’t fool them, cannot be taken for a ride and what have. Undoubtedly true, but more than that it is also very unpredictable!

What people are not noticing however is that victory of a political power is one thing and ensuring peace, justice, liberty and livelihood is another. The anti incumbency factor is raised again and again in Assam to justify the ouster of the Tarun Gogoi government. Also the surmise is that BP will now make forays into the embattled North East. People want a change and they have got it- in Assam is another untiring slogan. Peace be to all. If political change can bring about peace then nothing like it. But what about other issues like insurgency and talks with the ULFA? Some on social media have even said that Assam has now a young and dynamic Chief Minister and also good looking! Bravo.

The point is that politics in India has become so decrepit, and brazenly untruthful, a pack of lies that anything goes. Otherwise how can one explain the ‘unholy’ alliance between the Left and the Congress in West Bengal, when once upon a time the Left Front left the Central Government to protest about the Congress American policies? So the Left has become the Right, The Centre is of course ‘Right’ (!!) and the Congress is far far below the Centre. In West Bengal the Chief Minister has always taken a pro people, pro rural stance like the Left, but her party could wonderfully upstage it. Now that the ‘Right’ has come to the North East they have started promising the people how the immigrants, the ‘foreigners’ to be precise, will be dealt with, protect the culture of the indigenous people and blah blah. Of course centrally protecting the culture of the country is uppermost in their minds, a culture only defined and understood by them, notwithstanding the clamour of protests taking place among the intelligentsia, which they consider to be non secular.

In Assam an ex Minister an important one of the Congress, in fact a close ally of the then Chief Minister is now lauded for his political machinations in bringing the BJP into the portals of victory. He is the current brain wave in the state, the impresario who has not only brought about the downfall of the Congress Government, but a man who has taught them, not one but ten lessons. See, you do this to him, you get rid of him and this is what he does. You must pay dearly for your insidious follies!

The larger truth in India is the great untruth. There is no political will, let alone ideology. What is ideology is compromised at will and stakeholders come together only to capture power, pelf and Ministerial berths. We know, how in my state, in Meghalaya, Ministerial positions, or positions in lieu of it are created instantly to keep people happy or quiet. In this larger frame of untruth and hopelessness is positioned the ordinary citizen, who wants a quiet peaceful living, who is desirous of earning a decent livelihood with the basic comforts of living, and who will exercise his franchise once in five years. At that point in time he or she decides, what change they want, they are not interested in deep searching analyses by political commentators and buffs, what they want is how to co exist amicably in the midst of a highly plural world that is the state or the country. One noteworthy aspect about the elections in Assam is that the people came together as one, as part of a larger Assamese society to drive out a wasted regime. That is certainly one perspective and a way of looking at it.

Having come to power, whoever it may be, our politicians must understand that even if they call the shots, politics is embedded in society, and it has an impact on every person, which during the turn of elections became an amorphous mass- the electorate, wily and gutsy. They must also come to realize that you cannot take it for granted, but what they want above all is decent living and equitable sharing of wealth. Further they must also come to realize that they are duty bound towards the unemployed, the poor and the suffering. English speaking Marxists mouthing platitudes may not be accepted by all. Rather a crude Mamata Banerjee who at least can deliver some goods, literally speaking, may be welcomed in an impoverished state.

So beware, as the truth keeps on unfolding, unfurling  a larger canvas of hope, anger and surrender to expediency, five years can simply go in a rush. Then change.









Ananya S Guha

Ananya S Guha was born and brought up in Shillong, North East India. He has seven collections of poetry and his poems have been published worldwide. They have also been featured in several anthologies. He is also a columnist, critic and editor. He now is a Regional Director at the Indira Gandhi National Open University and holds a doctoral degree on the novels of William Golding.


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