The Modi Phenomenon

Year 2019 is surely assuming a milestone aura. How many predictions, blessings, hopes, expectations and curses have to come true, only time can say. But one thing is certain, the downfall for the Congress is not yet complete. The old and new regional alliances are poised to take those places left vacant by the Congress at the cost of Congress.

But they are still forced to extend support to the Congress only because the Congress has an All India imprint intact yet. BJP and 2019 are going to be historic in both ways. In case, BJP wins again, it might put a final curtain on the Congress and otherwise Congress might take its own time to get dissolved…..today, tomorrow or the next day. It is thus that 2019 Parliamentary elections assume such an importance politically, historically and even internationally.

On the eve of the auspicious occasion of the “festival of democracy” in India beginning almost close to Baisakhi/Pongal/Bihu/Ramadan, it is time to express gratitude to the founding fathers of the Indian constitution who evolved a system that could give an opportunity to the downtrodden and the socially and economically backward young boys from two different sober backgrounds to reach to the first two highest positions of the nation due to their merit, qualification, hard work and worth.

Some weeks back, the Prime Minister Narendra Modi made two important speeches in the run up to the Parliamentary elections. These two speeches of the PM caught the imagination of the people and a trend was unleashed #MainBhiChowkidar. The other popular trend that emerged on the social media is #ModiOnceMore. Narendra Modi has emerged truly as a political and diplomatic phenomenon who has attained international attention to his return to power.

Over the last one hundred years of history, the political class in India threw up great leaders. All of them had their greatness that was also duly acknowledged by the people. But if one has to select the Five Fabulous Leaders among them, in my opinion and analysis, they are like this: Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, Indira Gandhi, Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Narendra Modi.

Gandhi, undoubtedly, was a great leader among all who had tremendous contact and relationship with the people at large. But he was never connected with the issues of governance directly. Instead, he accepted the fact that he was a nationalist by an accident, Courtesy: the South Africa incident on a railway platform. His name and status was duly and unduly milked by the politicians of virtually all the hues for the first five decades of the independent India.

Nehru and Indira both got leadership on a platter but both were successful to rule India for more than three decades (put together). They had very special upbringing and background to enjoy as leaders of the masses. God had given great intellectual capacity to Nehru par excellence and Indira learnt lessons of politics right from her childhood.

Both took important good and bad decisions in the fields of politics, governance and international affairs. They had failures and successes due to their own approaches, attitudes and vision which they hardly compromised during their lifetime.

Atal Bihari Vajpayee had a humble background but belonged to a family where education was not an alien issue. He was given a special treatment by the then RSS leadership due to his qualities of mass leadership, Hindi oratory and political acumen.

Though he acquired a great experience of politics and international affairs yet he missed the very nerve centre of governance for a longer period of time in his life. However, he carried people along like Nehru and peddled soft on hard issues.

Narendra Modi belonged to a comparatively feeble background where a square meal was an all important issue. He learnt all arts, crafts and sciences because he was a good learner and a student of positive nature. God was kind to him to provide him opportunities, one after the other.

From daily Shakhas of RSS to the core organisational affairs, from small meetings in rooms to big audiences, from lower level activists to big national leaders, from Ramakrishna Mission Ashram to the Swami Narayana Ashram, from banks of small streams to the shores of ocean, from Thar desert in the Kutch to the snowy Himalayan heights, from small agitations in states to the mass movements at national level, from BJP HQs to the Assembly of Gujarat, and also, from river front of Sabarmati to the sprawling lawns of India Gate, he walked a long distance.

He virtually gained everything and anything out of his sheer experience (educational, political, organizational, spiritual, social and strategic) and it included even his vocabulary, grammar, language, technical knowhow, issues of governance, politics and international affairs. His being the Chief Minister of a state like Gujarat for a long period of 12 years gave him an extra edge that the other four fabulous leaders missed wittingly or unwittingly. Modi earned a staggering experience of full five years Prime Ministership, international summits, strategic and diplomatic conduct and the nitty-gritty’s of economic and internal affairs.

Modi translated his life experience into a reality successfully which was visible in the Parliament on 7th February 2018 when he spoke on the Vote of No-confidence. It will go down in the Parliamentary history of India as one of the great and important days and has the potential to be a part of the curriculum for the students of law, politics, history, parliamentary affairs and governance. His address contained wit, argument, sarcasm, logic, facts, semantics, control on language and attitude and above all a nice connect to his job despite continued interruptions.

Modi has proved himself to be a good student, good learner, good orator, good teacher, good administrator and also a good strategist. The way he dealt issues like Triple Talaq, his achievements as the Prime Minister of a country having 130 Crore population, government schemes for the poor and the downtrodden, welfare measures for ladies and in particular the emphasis on the Indian Ethos and cultural tradition with a continuous focus on jibes over the Congress and Congress alone gives a clear cut notion that Narendra Modi is well in the saddle for a long time to come to guide India and the world to better destinations.

His recent emphasis on the issues like social security, Ayshman Bharat, is a world record holder scheme; Swachta Abhiyan and Jan Aoushadi are masterpieces of governance that have brought great shift in the thinking of the people of the country. “Sabka Sath Sabka Vikas” has become a mass cry unlike the hollow slogan of “Garibi Hatao”. The detractors of Modi could not dent his image despite their sharp-edged weapons that they used on him. He instead used the pebbles thrown on him to build the staircase for his next immediate destination. He emerged exactly like a phoenix after his 2002 Gujarat experience.

The biggest feat of Narendra Modi in his international relations has been his bonhomie with the Arabian world. His relationship with the Arabs brought him to the podium of OIC through his External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on the occasion of Golden jublee celebrations of OIC. It was deemed to be his personal charisma that out of the 56-nation strong association of Muslim countries, he has developed personal connections with most of them with Pakistan as an exception. He is treated as a rock star in countries like UAE, Afghanistan, Indonesia and Saudi Arabia.

Modi has proudly exhibited his love for the cultural moorings, social cohesion, spiritual connections and identity occurrence. All these things put together have made him emerge as an unprecedented phenomenon himself which is going to play the crucial role in the ensuing biggest electoral contest of the world. The global attention is definitely on the Indian Parliamentary elections of April-May 2019 but if it has attracted charm, charisma and fascination, it is duly due to the phenomenon of Narendra Modi.