‘Congressizing’ the BJP

Tuesday, 27 October 2020



‘Congressizing’ the BJP

Swapnil Bharali | April 28, 2018 16:22 hrs

A gentleman I know loved to ride a Harley Davidson; unfortunately he was not a competent rider. The bike was too heavy for him and handling it was kinda cumbersome. But he loved the bike’s power so much that he hired a driver so he could piggyback on the pillion for the sake of his riding fun. Unfortunately, he hadn’t bargained for the fact that the driver would take his share of the advantage and occasionally invite his own friends to ride the bike on the sly. And the owner, for the love of his bike, often remained a mute spectator.


But wait… now why does this bring to the mind the long-awaited recent reshuffle of the Assam ministry? A recent chat over coffee with a senior BJP leader made it amply clear to me that it would have been impossible for the BJP to win Assam had veteran Congressman Himanta Biswa Sarma and his political acumen not been “saffronized” at the appropriate moment. That HBS corroborated his mettle once again with Tripura just shows his mastery over his craft – politics. With 2019 beckoning, giving HBS the long leash is only but natural. 


And so, with the politics of appeasement at play et al, CM Sarbananda Sonowal had no other choice but to ensure that his strongest pillar was suitably reinforced even as he expanded his house. Bringing in old Congress people like Sun Ronghang and Pijush Hazarika – the latter a known loyalist of Himanta - was indeed good politics. Avoiding bumpy rides in politics is always prudent. 


Come to think of it, Harleys ensure that – driver or not!


The sore point of this whole expansion is the ruffled feathers of party old-timers like Prasanta Phukan – a loyal image of the BJP from the days when it had just two MPs in Rajiv Gandhi’s government. And this when a recent claim on video had the new minister Siddhartha Bhattacharyya saying that the BJP is the only party who ensured recognition of loyalty. It is no wonder that Phukan has quit lamenting his “ineligibility” to be a minister clearly marking his protest at the neat “Congressization” of the Bharatiya Janata Party. 


Sad but the Harley must be ridden even if a driver is required!

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