Triumvirate against Trimurti
Pinpricks for Modi
By Faraz Ahmad
First it was the maverick Supreme Court lawyer, 90 something, Ram Jethmalani, a BJP MP from Rajasthan who took a half page ad in the Indian Express just the other day to “expose” Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s BJP dominated NDA government over its reluctance to bring back the much touted black money from abroad and targeted specifically Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, BJP president Amit Shah and implicitly Modi too.
A few days earlier another enfant terrible of the BJP Dr Subramanian Swamy went to meet the infamous godman Asaram Bapu, who along with his son has been languishing in jail for close to two years on charges of committing rape and sexually exploiting his women disciples. The exploits and nocturnal activities as well as passion for land grabbing in the name of hundreds of ashrams of Asumal Thaumal Harpalani were discussed in hushed tones for years in knowledgeable circles before the Gujarat government started swooping on him. Therefore it is widely known that this godman, who once enjoyed the same status with the Sanghis and even closet Sanghis in other parties as say Baba Ramdev does currently, is paying the price of falling foul of Narendra Modi. Which means that Swamy, who not so long ago, was a self-confessed admirer of Modi is now looking for an opportunity to embarrass the Prime Minister.
And now we have the intellectual wizard of the BJP/Sangh parivar Arun Shourie, the great crusader against corruption, express his frank and honest disapproval of the 11-month old government and blaming the Trimurti for all the current ills in Shourie’s chosen party, the BJP. Characterising Modi and his two musketeers Jaitley and Shah as media managers the former Editor in Chief of the Indian Express dismissed the government in Karan Thapar’s To The Point show on Headlines Today with being “satisfied because you are able to manage headlines” and damned the government saying “When the gap between projection and performance is so vast, people see only the distance.”
Accusing the Trimurti of having beaten any kind of dissent into submission Shourie charged Modi, Shah and Jaitley of “frightening not just the allies but their own group” and added “I think today the Government of India and the party consists of only three persons-Modi, Jaitley and Amit Shah. They work as a team….Secondly, they’ve frightened not just the allies but their own group—the extended party, etc.”
This is coming from Shourie who after the 2009 general elections had disdainfully dismissed the entire top leadership of the BJP as of no consequence and had cited Modi, the then Gujarat chief minister as the role model. Even though the three above mentioned have often clashed among themselves publicly specially Ram Jethmalani and Swamy, calling each the worst names and exposing the rival’s scams to the public, there is one thing which rankles them equally– the current pre-eminence of Arun Jaitley, who grew into this position, trained and nurtured under their wings.
But there is another thing which is common between the three and Jaitley, something which is rare among the Sanghis and which in turn the Sanghis value immensely, despite an apparent annoyance, their felicity with the English language. Swamy who is most superficial and shallow among the four has in fact crowed about his comfort with the English speaking variety. On the other hand Jaitley has often times expressed his angst at the party welcoming with open arms any right winger who can speak English fluently.
The problem is that all three namely Shourie, Jethmalani and Swamy believe they are the most gifted and are most eminently qualified to run any government, particularly a right wing BJP government and have disdain for Jaitley’s capability to run the show. Shourie at least has the veneer of some intellectual sophistication. Jethmalani on the other hand is a street fighter. As for Swamy, the less said the better. Jaitley too has only disdain for the trio. It is almost impossible for the trio to co-exist with Jaitley in the same cabinet. Perhaps that is why Modi has sought to maintain a safe distance from the trimurti.
But they have tremendous capability to make mischief and give pinpricks to Modi. They have declared an open war against Modi and his government. Let’s see what course it takes.