April 23, 2019

Core in BJP Election Manifesto

With the recent controversy post the failure of the BJP in forming the government in Karnataka, I decided to see if there is anything Core in the election manifesto.  A short introduction to #Core terminology conceived by @realitycheckind and elaborated by @pranasutra is given below:

#Core1 – Parity in Education. Uniform application of laws for all players.

#Core2 – Create common pool of public goods/resources and ensure equitable distribution of same.

#Core3 – Open data and utilization info on Quotas issue. Ensure demonstration of violence potential removed from equation.

#Core4 – Control of Temples back to Hindus. Genuine issues that may exist to be handled via labeling, channeling etc.

#Core5 – Legal recognition for essential practices of ‘pagan’ Hindu religion. Take PIL out of the equation.

#Core6 – Special place & recognition for Cows. If this becomes burden on exchequer devise schemes with burden on Hindus. But cows are ours!

(Sourced from https://twitter.com/pranasutra/status/915952428658302977)

The election manifesto of BJP is a 52 page pdf document and the core items might not be present under header of the election manifesto. The BJP exclusively talks about Core in page 18 of pdf ( or page 10 of manifesto)  as “The counter to the concept of India First is what is happening today: appeasement of one, at the cost of another, using institutions for protecting the interest of a particular party or persons. It is reflected in the thinking that whatever is not in the interest of a party is not in the interest of India. Clearly, Governance on these lines is not in the interest of India. Simply speaking India First puts the national interest first while taking any decision or step both by governments and citizens.  Even more simply put, you have to just see the face of India and Indians when you are in doubt. This is what separates India First from the present day politics and Governance of the Congress .”

Those who claim that BJP has not talking about the Core items are only diverting the agenda at hand. But the action items for the Core agenda is not present till Page18 of the BJP manifesto even though it talks about the unfortunate political leadership who could not comprehend India’s inner vitality which was the main force responsible for India’s survival despite several attacks and prolonged foreign rule and thus failed to rekindle the spirit of India.(page 9 of pdf or page1 of manifesto). The next couple pages are filled with words regarding civilisational ethos which is definitely Hind which is basically a part of core and cultural agenda.

There is no talk about the following core Items 1-5 in the entire manifesto.

Regarding the Cows the election manifesto of BJP tells that “necessary legal framework will be created to protect and promote cow progeny and national cattle development board will be setup to implement a Programme for the improvement of indigenous live stock breeds.” Here the BJP doesnot want to appear to give special protection because Cow is considered sacred to Hindus but because it is good for agricultural and cultural life of our country. Wondering what cultural life the manifesto is talking? Atleast the BJP could have said that they want to implement the Directive principles of the constitution instead of beating around the cultural bush.

While there is no explicit talk about Temples, the BJP wants to provide appropriate resources for the maintenance and restoration of all national heritage sites and to prevent their vandalisation in any form. The less talked about this the better because of a law drafted by the BJP would aid the heritage business as said by the India Pride Project people. The language section of BJP is a mirage and nothing much can be said and it is not a issue related to Core as of now.

Now I am in doubt whether it was wrong of me to say that BJP did not do anything for the Core agenda or it was a fake expectation that they would something which was not there in the manifesto. Whether BJP did virtue signaling about the Hindu issues during the election campaign? It appears that the Core agenda is not even distant concern for the BJP or else some of its state governments would have implemented a few of the action item even though they were not specifically mentioned. But instead what we have is the declaration of the Core agenda during the last phase of the Karnataka election campaign. This is only to protect the vote base of the BJP which it likes to screw post the elections. There is an unbreakable bond between the vote base of the BJP and its leadership.

Since the BJP has never stated that it would act on the Core agenda explicitly it is useless to think that it would because is simply following its manifesto. Hence the Core agenda might not get fulfilled by the BJP and thus the people have to find alternative ways to get the agenda fulfilled. Yes, BJP has harmed Hindu interests during the good old days of D4 by supporting anti-Core agenda of the UPA but the current leadership is not as bad as the D4 but its furthering the anti-Core agenda is a issue of concern. I can conclude with some degree of faith in the BJP leadership, that it might not draft bills like CVB but it has high potential to draft and implement dangerous laws like RTE.

None of the state governments of the BJP have dared to think beyond the imposed secularism except in a few rare cases. Even in these rare cases like anti-conversion bills etc the governments backed off due to the pressure created by the real communal bigots. By the time the Core issue goes out of control and becomes irreversible (in case it has not already happened), the BJP leadership would be putting ointment to the wounds of the citizens like it has happened to the Kashmiri Pandits or Judicial Activism. Whatever might be the issue, a citizen being driven out of his place is the failure of the nation, a citizen waiting for decades for justice is injustice and the same is the case with the Core issues. Once we let go too much it will not be easy to crawl back when it comes to Core agenda. The economic agenda is only a matter of political will but Core agenda is not purely national politics because it involves players beyond our lands who are outside of our limits.

BJP is a non Core agenda party but can at best become a near-economic right party. All this talk about Hindu civilisational revival is plain virtue signaling. There is nothing wrong in supporting BJP because BJP brings prosperity into our hands of all citizens and who could use the wealth to take up the core agenda via the discriminatory judicial system with the hope of getting justice.


Picture Credit: Ananth Kumar


About Vijendra Bhat 141 Articles
Currently working as an Assistant Professor in an Engineering College in Udupi district, Karnataka. Earlier Worked in Steel Foundry Industry for 6 years. Interested in the politics and revival of Bharat.
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