BJP nat'l executive meeting: Exercise in self-praise, instead of indicating clear direction on economic revival, foreign policy & social harmony

02:30 AM Nov 09, 2021 | FPJ Editorial

That the BJP national executive effusively praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his exceptional leadership and achievements is an irrelevant ritual. That the BJP resolved to expand its base at the peak of its glory was yet to come is also not related to the myriad problems the nation is grappling with. It is truly distressing that no other substantial message came from the meeting, indicating the ruling elite’s disinterest or unease in dealing with questions of vital importance.

The nation expected a clear direction on economic revival, employment generation, foreign policy and social harmony but the party chose to wallow in conceit and vanity, instead of honestly assessing its performance and the ground reality. Such a political exercise should not be restricted to the narrow purpose of refurbishing the image of the government and the supreme leader.

The Prime Minister said the BJP doesn’t revolve around a family. That advantage is granted to the BJP and there is no point in wasting time and energy on that discourse. He also asked the BJP workers to become a ‘bridge of faith’ for the people, stressing the need to connect with the people. While bridges can’t be built on faith alone, what the RSS-BJP has succeeded in is building walls between citizens of different faiths.


The Prime Minister, who gave a slogan of ‘sabka saath, sabka vikas and sabka vishwas’ needs to ponder whether his government and the party have done enough to give meaning and purpose to this lofty objective. You don’t build bridges by running hate campaigns; you don’t earn people’s faith by endangering their faith. There was no message on this disconcerting problem from the top leadership at a time when the cadre has drifted into the ‘goli-maaro-saalon-ko’ mould.

It is truly inexplicable that economic issues didn’t dominate the day-long discourse; while leaders hailed the Prime Minister for running a powerful vaccination drive, there was no meaningful communication on the efforts to rev up the economy ravaged by the pandemic. If the ruling party doesn’t acknowledge that unemployment has acquired a menacing form, how will an effective solution be found?


The Congress may be a family-controlled party but it has never shied away from discussing burning issues at AICC sessions or plenary. It was strange to find the finance minister behaving like a crybaby, complaining against the Congress tarnishing the government’s image, instead of unveiling the roadmap to revive the economy.

What was worse, there was no message for China, which has wantonly demonstrated its mischievous intent over the past two years. The ruling party not articulating its concern over the threat to national sovereignty is bewildering at a time when Chinese intrusion into several states has rattled security experts, as well as citizens. The Prime Minister’s assertion that the BJP was about ‘Sewa-Sankalp-Samarpan’ will sound hollow if scrutinised against the hesitancy to tackle pressing problems upfront.

While it is not open to dispute that the government and the party failed to adequately respond to the people’s miseries when the second wave of Covid struck hard, the ‘resolve’ and the ‘commitment’ will not be judged by electoral successes or organisational expansion of the BJP. Public concerns cannot be brushed under the carpet; democracy demands accountability and the BJP leadership hasn’t adhered to this sacred principle.

One glaring example is demonetisation – a reckless decision taken on November 8, 2016, against all economic rationale and pragmatic politics. The decision caused immense misery to the people and failed to achieve the stated objectives. Ideally, there should have been a commission to examine the achievements and ill-effects of demonetisation to guide future governments which intended to resort to such tactics.

The BJP has reached its pinnacle by winning the parliamentary elections twice and expanding its base across the country. The party can sustain its dominance by protecting constitutional principles, repairing its credibility through transparency and accountability, and responding to the national challenges with greater sincerity. Bulldozing questions and the opposition is not only undemocratic, such shortcuts do not take you far. Power gives parties muscle and swagger but gnaws at the sense of responsibility.

The Congress committed mistakes and the people dumped it contemptuously. No political party is immune to democratic pressures and the BJP should wake up to this reality sooner than later. Hollow words aren’t the raw material for ‘bridge of faith’. You have to deliver on your promises to show ‘Sewa-Sankalp-Samarpan’ aren’t just tools of political deceit. The BJP should have correctly read the setback in the recent bypolls and made the national executive more meaningful.

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