For the last one decade or so I have stopped casting my vote in favour of any political party. That I did after having done a serious pondering on the issue and realizing that I was wasting my vote. I started first casting an invalid vote and later using form 49A of the Election Commission. I have no interest in any party. For me the saying “birds of a feather flock together” holds very well in their case.
With these remarks I come to the issue in context. For the last about 2 weeks, the Samajvadi Party boss Mulayam’s inexperienced son’s government is in the news – a news that has become an exceptionally hot topic of discussion because of the suspension of an IAS officer, Durga Shakti Nagapal, who has not yet completed her 12 months’ initial service to the government. Her fault? How dare she did take action against the politically “respected” sand mafia of Noida, where she was posted as an SDM. That is alleged to be the actual reason behind the suspension. But the excuse offered by the “respectable” CM of the biggest state of UP – one that is passing through the worst phase of its existence – is that she committed an “unpardonable crime” of creating an atmosphere that could have lead to riots but did not actually take place. Crime is crime, and she deserves to be punished, punished as harshly as possible. That is what the SP leaders are maintaining. The CM would perhaps like to see her dismissed from service, although that may not be legally possible or easy to achieve I believe.
Why is the CM – and in fact the whole Samajvadi Party – so much against the fresh entrant to government service? Before suspending her she should have been served a notice to explain her position. Why was she served a suspension order without delay in the middle of night? Why did Narendra Bhati, party’s leader and allegedly connected with sand business claim that he did get her suspension orders signed within 41 minutes of the incidence of alleged “bulldozing” of the wall of a mosque under construction?
I believe the reason of her suspension is much more serious than this. The sand mafia must have been trying to “punish” her and the SP government must have been contemplating of finding the opportune moment and the right excuse of getting rid of her by simply transferring her. Narendra Bhati was trying his best. In the mean time the Mosque wall’s pull down took place, and Bhati did not waste time in encashing the event by relating it with an imaginary riot that was to take place. Samajvadi Party, I believe found it to be a good opportunity to consolidate the minority (that is Muslim) votes in its favour. All sorts of excuses were immediately invented to spread the message that the poor SDO, was responsible for a would-have-taken-place riot. The LIU report was taken to be strongest evidence for the “ill intentions” of that lady, ignoring the DM’s report.
Now media reports say no LIU report was there to blame the SDO. Indeed there was a report, but it was referring to another SDM, one of “Javer”, a nearby block. Now there is also a media report that the Baqf Board has announced that the said SDM did not do anything wrong. It is being said that the Mosque wall was being constructed illegally and that the villagers pulled it down voluntarily. There was no social tension that could have resulted in riots.
Why is the Samajavadi Party so adamant not to revoke her suspension? The reason I understand is that it wants to impress upon the gullible Muslim community that it is the only party to safeguard their interests. It can go to any extent to protect them from the “ill intentions” of other political parties. Mulayam Singh has already managed a good-sized Yadav vote bank. He has very cleverly sent a message to his Yadav fraternity by appointing Yadavs on a large number of important administrative posts. The recent reservation policy of UPPSC was allegedly meant to favour OBC within which Yadavs form the most forward community. To this Yadav/OBC vote bank he has to add a Muslim vote bank, so that he gets impressive election results in the coming Loksabha elections. Traditionally UP Muslims have been casting their votes in SP’s favour, but this time Mulayam Singh apprehends that the Congress party may somehow succeed in earning their favour. In order to keep his Muslim votes intact he has to resort to every tactics, even if that be not in the wider interests of the society and the country. He knows that his Yadav-Muslim vote bank would yield excellent results in the coming 2014 elections.
It appears now that his move to win the Muslim favour has not really worked well and he is under attack from all directions. There is no tenable evidence that the IAS officer was at fault. He has inadvertently sent a wrong message that the Muslims are quick in resorting to riots, when their religious symbols appear to be under attack. Almost everybody now believes that by punishing the officer he was helping the sand mafia. To avoid that allegation he resorted to an alternative course of suspending the SDO. This time he has failed in his calculations.
It is important to note that several riots have taken place in UP during the present Akhilesh regime. It is being said that no officer has been suspended for these events. In some cases the officers are close relations of the SP leaders. On the other hand the Noida SDM is being punished for riots that did not take place. All this is hard to understand.
It is time that we Indians realize that the current breed of politicians have created the worst type of politics – the vote bank politics. In addition to that there is no internal democracy in most of the political parties. When the boss of one such party commits a wrong then rest of the leaders start to justify that at all costs. That is the democratic culture of these parties. That is indeed ironical and unfortunate. – Yogendra Joshi