Does anyone remember the ten questions Ram Jethmalani posed to Rajiv Gandhi for a while? Did it make a dent in the Congress Party? He appears to be on a warpath with his own party, the BJP, now. People these days have shorter memory spans and even shorter loyalties, and are in a hurry to pronounce the end of political parties.
Mr Jethmalani wrote a letter to the BJP president, Nitin Gadkari, which was probably meant for everyone but him:
“I am convinced that you are firmly set on the path of suicide and you are determined to drag the whole party with you. ‘Vinash kal vipreet buddhi (when one is set to be doomed he loses his mind)’ is an old maxim.”
He does not seem to realise that at this juncture the BJP cannot afford to make major changes. Gadkari’s involvement in financial skulduggery will become one more case of a politician benefiting from his position. How far will such discoveries take anyone? Which party can come out clean?
Who is supporting Jethmalani? Yashvant Sinha and Shatrughan Sinha. Both are not considered crucial to the party, and have been sidelined in the past. Jethmalani’s own affiliations have not been constant. While it is a good thing to raise questions about one’s own party, he has in fact committed hara kiri, for he suggests that one individual (Gadkari) is capable of bringing a party that boasts of being disciplined and without any ego issues down.
He cannot deny that while fighting for the truth, his stand is also egotistic. There is no reason to be part of cliques within a party or to prop up one person against the other. If being a Parliamentarian is of no consequence to him, then why hanker after positions of power?
“Politicians are not going to solve the problems of the world. Politicians are a class to which I plead guilty... My only extenuating circumstance is that I am more of a lawyer and very much less of a politician and I am not, therefore, a successful politician in the normal sense of the word.”
In a system of electoral governance, politicians are supposed to run the country. They are often ably assisted by lawyers in managing to hoodwink the public. Being an unsuccessful politician does seem to work better for politicking.
There are many problems in the world and people do try what is within their capacity to solve them. Is that always for the best for everyone? Perhaps, not. Since Mr. Jethmalani has the world’s concerns on his mind, he should address something closer home. How about taking up the case of Zakia Jafri?
Is Narendra Modi off the hook? I am a bit surprised at the reportage. What does a headline like ‘Zakia can’t contest Modi clean chit now’ (Times of India) mean?
As The Hindu reports:
A metropolitan court here on Tuesday ordered that Zakia Jafri, whose husband and senior Congress leader Ehsaan Jafri was killed in the 2002 Gujarat riots, had lost the right to file her protest petition challenging the against Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi. The court stated Ms. Jafri had failed to file the petition despite repeated orders.
- This has merely been announced in a local court.
- Her lawyer is going to appeal to the apex court, so the rush to exonerate is a bit disingenuous.
- The Special Investigative Team (SIT) had given a clean chit on the CM. It is not the court or the final authority. Besides, why was she given an incomplete report?
- If she failed to appear before the court within the stipulated time, it still does not prove that Mr Modi is not culpable.
- What about the delays necessititated by transfers of police officers in Gujarat? What about the SIT’s own obfuscations?
- If Zakia Jafri cannot file a protest petition against the SIT report, she can file another petition. Court cases are known to drag on and it is obvious that delays take place when either the petitioner or respondent is not co-operative or available, or due to judicial delays.
To push the envelope, even if facetiously, if "lapse of time" is a reason, then it would be prudent to ask certian political parties to stop being obsessive about what the past Muslim conquerors did and use it to beat the present Muslims with. A great deal of time has lapsed.
Let me repeat what I wrote after the SIT report (do try and read the whole piece Trial and Terror of the Gujarat Riots Verdict, too):
"The Supreme Court-appointed special investigation team (SIT) on Wednesday gave a clean chit to chief minister Narendra Modi on allegations of his involvement in the 2002 riots. In its final report submitted to the metropolitan court, the SIT has filed a closure summary against Modi and 62 others accused by Zakia Jafri, widow of slain Congress MP Ehsan Jafri.
"The SC had asked SIT to probe Jafris allegation that the Gulbarg Society massacre in which 67 people were killed, was the result of a larger conspiracy. But the probe agency, headed by former CBI chief R K Raghavan, concluded it could not find any prosecutable evidence against the accused."
This effectively means that if the government was not involved, then someone else was. Why has that angle not been investigated? Will the Modi government and the honourable Supreme Court order a probe, for the report does mention that people were burnt alive? How did it happen? Or did it not happen? Did Gulberg Society just disappear? There has to be other “prosecutable evidence”. Whose job is it to find out – the victims, the NGOs or the intelligence agencies?
On what basis is the government gloating? This shows the utter lack of any ethics. I am not big on the politics of remorse and of demanding apologies, for it is the easy way out. However, will Narendra Modi even consider stepping down as chief minister?
What I cannot understand is why so much effort is being expended on helping Modi - or calling it a "boost for elections" - when come December and it will be a cakewalk for him.