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A self-serving debate

The lead editorial in the latest issue of CPM mouthpiece People’s Democracy took on BJP’s PM candidate L.K. Advani for challenging Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.....


April 7, 2009 1:42:03 am

The lead editorial in the latest issue of CPM mouthpiece People’s Democracy took on BJP’s PM candidate L.K. Advani for challenging Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for a US presidential election-style national debate: “This is not an innocent remark aimed at generating a public debate,so that the voter may make a reasoned decision. Seen in conjunction with his earlier remarks of a bipolarity in Indian politics (two-party system like in the USA),these remarks confirm the fact that the BJP,functioning as the political arm of the RSS, seeks to convert our parliamentary form of democracy into a presidential form like that in the US,” it says.

The BJP has been making efforts to impose a presidential form of government in the country and,in fact,the party’s 1991election manifesto had said that it would appoint “a commission to study and report whether the presidential system of government will give us the most suitable government than the present parliamentary system,” it says. “The RSS had always preferred the presidential form in place of the present parliamentary system as that will facilitate its objective of transforming the secular democratic republican character of the Indian constitution in order to pave the way for the establishment of its vision of a rabidly intolerant ‘Hindu Rashtra’,” the edit claims.

Credit where it’s due

A brief article titled “Prime ministerial stuff?” gave a backhanded compliment to L.K. Advani for asking the UPA government to procure details of accounts of Indians in the Swiss banks and from banks in other tax havens in the world. It reminded Advani that the issue was first raised by the CPM Politburo in February. “It is good that Mr Advani has now raised the issue of recovery of huge amounts of money lying in secret accounts of Indians in the Swiss banks. .. Obviously,Mr Advani has chosen to conceal the fact that the issue he is raising today has already been part of the public discourse for over a month since the CPM raised it. Or,is this the culture of ‘cultural nationalism’ of the BJP?” it asked.

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Compiled by Manoj C.G.

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