Analysing trends before the upcoming assembly elections in five states, a January 25 editorial in the daily Siasat (based out of Hyderabad and Bangalore) finds anti-incumbency waves in all of them. The Congress party,ruling at the Centre,is trying to exploit the anti-incumbency waves in UP and Punjab… The party,with Rahul Gandhi as its hero,dreams of ruling the entire country on its own… But the feelings and views of the people in his meetings indicate that these elections are no more than a hard trial for the party. The Congress is being denied popular support because of its anti-people actions,and the perception that it tried to destroy the countrys important institutions and the exchequer,the paper writes.
On the BSPs likely strategy in UP,Rashtriya Sahara writes in its January 28 editorial that some observers are of the view that Mayawati would unhesitatingly shake hands with the BJP in case the party falls short of a majority. It adds: The target of Mayawatis direct and sharp attack are the Congress and the SP. She has also attacked the BJP,but it is clear that she is doing so simply to change the taste in her mouth (moonh ka maza badalney ke liye). The BJPs posture is similar it appears like an unsheathed sword before the Congress and the SP,but is visibly soft on the BSP. According to informed sources,the party has signalled to its voters to opt for the BSP where the BJP candidate is not seen as a winner,and let its voters know that the BJP will be a part of the state government after the elections. Regarding the SP,the paper writes: During the last assembly elections,Muslims were disenchanted with the SP,and the party had to pay for it. This time,the minority community appears to be less annoyed,but there is no clarity on the quantum of this decrease.
What drives Modi
The Narendra Modi governments reaction to the governor appointing Justice (retd.) R.A. Mehta as the states Lokayukta has been the subject of much discussion. The daily Inquilab,published from Mumbai,Delhi,Lucknow,Kanpur and Bareilly,writes: (Justice Sahays remarks) show that the Gujarat high court is fully aware of Narendra Modis clever ways of saving his government,running it and deceiving the people… Earlier too,the Modi government has had to listen to the judiciarys critical remarks but there has not been the slightest change .
Hyderabads leading daily,Munsif,says in a commentary on January 22: It is not difficult to understand why the Modi government remains stubborn on the Lokayukta appointment. Narendra Modi,driven by his ego,has consistently expressed his desire to place Gujarat above the rest of India. The BJPs double standards have also been proved. It took an inordinately long time to secure the resignation of B.S.Yedyurappa in Karnataka and did not resist the temptation of taking out a rath yatra against corruption. It extended need-based support to Anna Hazare on the Lokpal issue,but abruptly withdrew when it sensed the prospect of being swept aside by the strong waves. Describing the high court verdict as a slap by the judiciary on Modis face, the Delhi-based weekly,Nai Duniya,edited by SP leader and former MP Shahid Siddiqui,writes : Narendra Modis approach shows that he is determined that,irrespective of whatever the highest officials of his own administration say or what judgement the chief justice of his own states judiciary gives,if it is not in his favour,he is not prepared to accept it.
The elections in Egypt,which have favoured two Islamic parties with two-thirds of the vote,have delighted sections of the Urdu press. Munsif,in an editorial on January 23,worries that the results have made the US and Israel restless as their chosen rulers have now given way to those who follow Islamic teachings,have an Islamic identity and are sympathetic to the Islamic world.
Jamaat e Islamis bi-weekly,Daawat,has focused on the complexities ahead in constitution-building,and negotiating equations between the army,the government,non-Muslims and foreign elements.
Compiled by Seema Chishti