Demand On Congress: Govern Or Go
Symptomatic of the Congress –led UPA-II Government inability to provide effective governance and manage its coalition partners in a cohesive and participative manner was the ‘Trinamool Tsunami’ which hit the Congress Party-led Government on an issue which could have been forestalled by better coalition management unless it was a well-choreographed drama enacted by the Congress leadership to put the tempestuous Trinamool Congress leader Mamata Chatterjee in her place using her own nominated Railway Minister, because of her persistent challenges to the Congress Government despite being a coalition partner in New Delhi.
Such repetitive political incidents arising from mismanagement of coalition partners is a serious political distraction impeding good governance. The repetitive cycle of corruption scams, interference in the federal structure of India arising from political arrogance and now this tangle has prompted India’s political opposition parties to demand of the Congress Government to either “Govern or Go”
The Indian political situation has reached a point where it is rapidly changing by the hour in unforeseen and unpredictable ways. The latest political turbulence since yesterday has been the Trinamool Congress tussle with its UPA-II coalition leader, the Congress Party. This has arisen because of the Railway Minister, a nominee of Trinamool Congress leader Mamata Chatterjee, in presentation of the Railway Budget yesterday enhanced railway fares against her expressed wishes. Mamata Chatterjee promptly responded by writing to the Prime Minister to replace her nominated Railway Minister even before he could defend his budgetary proposals in Parliament.
The Congress Government till this evening has been stalling the issue of replacement of the Railway Minister buying time to enable the passing of the Railway Budget through the incumbent nominee of the Trinamol Congress even though his replacement stood named by his Party. Such was the enormity of the political challenge that the Prime Minister had to call a late night emergency meeting of the Cabinet and the Congress Core Group.
Late at night there was a buzz that the Trinamool Congress may withdraw political support to the Congress Government and thereby engineering mid-term General Election polls. The Congress Government stood emboldened for the Prime Minister to declare that the Congress Government was not endangered as it had the numbers on its side. This confidence presumably arises from some back-door deal with the Samajwadi Party which may have been lured to join the Government to off-set the possibility of a pull-out by the Trinamool Congress from the coalition government.
The opposition political parties sensing a possible fall of the politically tottering Congress Government are daily sharpening their knives to hasten the downfall of the Congress Government, On the other hand the Congress Party daily expresses its determination to ride out political turbulence and complete its full term in office till mid-2014.
In this sort of political battle India stands condemned to political uncertainty and political turbulence which impacts on good governance. Politically distracted Congress Government and resultant ineffective governance has already affected India’s economic growth and a decline of Foreign Direct Investment. It is also affecting India’s national security in that vital decisions on acquisition of crucial military equipment for the Indian Armed Forces are getting delayed.
There does not seem to be much hope on the Indian political horizon of India’s political uncertainties ending. The Prime Minister has no independent political standing of his own to provide strong and bold political decisions and the Congress Government survives because the major political opposition party, the BJP cannot muster adequate numbers to rally behind its leadership to effectively bring down the political downfall of the Congress Government and pave the way for Mid-Tem General Elections.
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Dr. Subhash Kapila
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