The Shiv Sena breaking away from the NDA to form a government in Maharashtra with the support of the NCP and Congress is the focus of the editorials of Organiser and Panchjanya. While Panchjanya calls it a betrayal, Organiser calls it “maha-natak” or grand drama.
Organiser says that “as of now curtains are pulled down on more than a month-long drama, what was the mandate, who betrayed the mandate, whether the Shiv Sena has compromised with its core ideology, should (the) Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have experimented with an alliance with Ajit Pawar and what will be the future of this government, etc — these questions will haunt the political pundits at least for some time”. It adds that the Shiv Sena had to hang on to political power “by hook or by crook” because its political space was shrinking “not because of the BJP but due to series of divisions and deterioration in organisational structure after the demise of Balasaheb Thackeray”.
The editorial asserts that the three parties in power now have compromised on their morals and for the electorate, the BJP is still a moral compass.
Panchjanya says in its editorial that compared to any other party, the voters of Maharashtra had chosen the BJP, “but in its victory and defeat of others, (the) BJP forgot that its rise gives others a heavy heart”. It says though the NDA alliance had remained the same, the Shiv Sena has changed: It is “not the Shiv Sena of Balasaheb Thackrey who gave the clarion call for Hindutva”.
Another topic that features prominently in Panchjanya and Organiser is the Uniform Civil Code. Organiser has two articles on the subject. The first is a report on “legal experts, scholars, academicians and social workers” coming together on November 23 to “press upon the demand for the immediate enactment of Indian Civil Code claiming that implementing uniform civil code will ensure equality of citizens irrespective of religion”. It mentions that the speakers at the event had asked the government to direct the Law Commission to study the common civil codes of developed countries and the one in Goa to come up with a draft “acceptable to all”.
The second article is about what B R Ambedkar had to say about the civil code. It says that Ambedkar had countered the argument that in a country as diverse as India there cannot be be a single code and that Muslim personal law was “immutable and uniform throughout the nation”. It concludes by saying that the “present government has momentous opportunity to undo the crimes on the Constitution perpetrated over the ages and to reinstate Dr Ambedkar, and the document that he so passionately architected, into their glorious magnificence”.
In Panchajanya, Chancellor of the Maulana Azad National Urdu University, Firoz Bakht Ahmed, writes about one code in one nation. Bakht says that “today when India’s stature is growing in the world… there needs to be one Indian personal code, which includes the good things of all sides and aligns with everyone”.
Mamata and NRC
An article in Panchjanya claims that West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s opposition to the NRC in the state is to provide protection to “infiltrators” who are part of her vote bank in the state. It says that Banerjee’s “anger and frustration over implementing the NRC in West Bengal is natural because she knows that the moment NRC is implemented, Muslims who have infiltrated from Bangladesh in hordes will be identified”.
The article is titled ‘Inhein Ghuspaithh Pasand Hai’ or “She likes infiltrators”.
It says “infiltrators” are a national and international security threat, and intelligence agencies have been warning about them, “but despite all this, the secular groups in the country are brimming with love for Muslims and infiltrators”. The communist parties, Congress and TMC are protesting against a nation-wide NRC in the Rajya Sabha, the article says.
West Bengal has more than 30 per cent Muslim voters, 70 per cent of who, according to the article, vote for the TMC. It mentions eight districts in the state which it claims are “bastions of Bangladeshi infiltrators” and they have “completely distorted” the population in these parts.
It mentions that the Hindu population of West Bengal has come down to 69 per cent from 80 per cent earlier and that “nearly 15 to 20 per cent illegal Bangladeshi Muslim infiltrators have made the state their bastion”. Beyond these people, other Muslims too vote to Banerjee as a unit, Panchjanya says. These are the reasons, it that Banerjee “appeases the Muslim community” in the state.
Compiled by Krishn Kaushik