This refers to the editorial, “Get down to business”, dated November 27, 2019. That politicians make strange bedfellows was visibly evident from the emergence and subsequent coming together of regional satraps with divergent views and conflicting ideologies in the aftermath of the 2019 Assembly elections in Maharashtra. It was not surprising to see bitter relations among various traditional rivals turn cordial and demagogues finding commonality in their views on secularism, social justice, agrarian crisis, and governance to "save democracy". Each faction was led by an overly ambitious political leader who tried to flame regional passions for more political space. The incumbent Bharatiya Janata Party dispensation was projected as arrogant, anti-development and anti-minority that could only be defeated by a "pro-poor" and "secular" alliance.
It is unfortunate, however, that despite the BJP-Shiv Sena combine being rewarded with the mandate to form government, the two parties could not iron out their differences. The BJP's nocturnal capture of power and the governor intervening in a partisan manner was an equally reprehensible and dispiriting episode in Indian democracy. Former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, when faced with a floor test in Parliament, made an oblique reference to Sharad Pawar and very cogently said, "If power comes in my hand by breaking the party and forming a new alliance for power, I would not like to even touch such power with a pair of tongs." It is time the central government refrained from indulging in political misadventurism by attempting to install a government either run or backed by defectors. Toppling popularly elected state governments and then resuscitating them by offering outside support in. It is imperative for all stakeholders to act as guardians of the constitutional order rather than as collaborators in a clandestine, political schemes.
Shreyans Jain, New Delhi
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