Narendrabhai Modi won for the third consecutive time the Gujarat State assembly elections. Like in the earnings report of a corporation that analysts expect to be the outcome, the market already incorporates into its calculations the results and therefore it does not alter the stock prices, the outcome of the Gujarat elections don’t throw up any surprises. When there are no surprises, there’s little of interest. But what’s going to happen next is an interesting question because there will be surprises.
Certainly the media paid for and bought by the Antonia Maino Congress still have to go through the motions and talk down Modi’s stock to earn their living. Barkha Dutt, Rajdeep Sardesai, Vir Sanhvi, Sagarika Ghose and the rest of the loathsome bunch have to do what they have to do to earn their keep which amounts to dumping on Modi. But that too is part of the information set and there are no surprises. Had they done anything else it would have been as surprising as a retard suddenly overthrowing some generally accepted basic result of physics.
What would Narendrabhai do next is the interesting question. Let me pause to point out one little thing — I refer to Modi as Narendrabhai. The “bhai” suffix is a sign of respect, just like in Hindi you would say “ji” or in Japanese you would say “san.” Actually, if I were to use the Japanese convention, I would not even stop at “Narendra-san”; I would escalate it to “Narendra-sama” — a much higher sign of respect.
I respect Narendrabhai. Why, you may ask. The simple answer is that because he does not care. He does not care about shit. He cares about India but he does not care about shit. To put it as mildly and politely as I am capable of, there’s a lot of shit that is flying around from the top — Antonia Maino — to the bottom starting with her chief chaprasi Dr Singh and his cabinet of crooks, to the low-paid retards on their payroll such as the unmentionable Sanjay Jha.
(I should point out that I preferentially use “Antonia Maino” over the more common “Sonia Gandhi.” It’s because I prefer to call a spade a spade, or as in this case, an Italian by her Italian name. Referring to her as “Sonia Gandhi” is something the feminist in me would not allow. She was born as Italian and with a perfectly fine Italian heritage and name that she ought to be proud of. There’s no reason to force a change of name on her merely because of her marriage to some (nominal) Indian. I don’t know for sure but I am told that the man known as Rajiv Gandhi also had his name changed to some foreign name when he (allegedly) converted to Catholicism to marry the Catholic Antonia Maino. But that’s neither here nor there as this is about Shri Narendrabhai Modi — a person who would not change his name or misrepresent his origin for money or power. So let me move on.)
Narendrabhai has no use for the enormous amounts of steaming piles of horseshit that the Indian political scene is decorated with.
Like me, Narendrabhai does not care for the shit that the NDTV-watching public lap up so eagerly. He wants to appeal to the voter who has got his or her priorities straight. Narendrabhai is not a chaprasi.
Allow me to digress once again. I call someone like Dr Singh a chaprasi but I don’t intend to demean the station of a chaprasi. In any functioning system, you do need chaprasis. They too have their place. You need CEOs and you need chaprasis who will do what is required of people who carry files from one desk to another without having the burden of figuring out what the organization ought to do. Dr Singh’s function is the polar opposite of what a CEO does. He follows orders while the CEO gives instructions.
Now here’s the important thing: chaprasis serve at the pleasure of the managers of the firm. They don’t dictate strategy or even how much to spend on office supplies. They just do what they are told to do. Dr Singh, the chief chaprasi in the Antonia Maino setup does what he is instructed to do. He really does not have a role in deciding policy, leave alone dictating policy.
As I was saying, Dr Singh resides at the polar opposite of the spectrum that Narendrabhai occupies. Narendrabhai does not care for shit. The question of what he would do next is therefore so self-evidently clear that I hesitate to spell it out fearing that I would be insulting your intelligence. But allow me to elaborate.
Many many year ago, when I was running for the class representative at my undergrad engineering college, my message to the voting public was simple: “Vote for me if you want a competent representative. I will represent your welfare better than the other candidates. But if you don’t want me to do that, that’s perfectly fine with me. No skin off my back.”
I did not try to persuade them overly. I was not really interested in selling myself to them. If they were deserving of what I had to offer them, good for them. If they didn’t want what I had to offer, good for them also. No compulsion. The world will not end if I didn’t get elected.
I lost that election, and every other election that I have ever participated in. The thing is that my offer is “take it or leave it” — no coercion. I didn’t enter the race for personal gain and I will be damned if I want your support for any personal gains.
I don’t know for sure but I suspect that Narendrabhai has a somewhat similar stand which goes like this: “I have something to offer in terms of what we should be doing in terms of public policy. If you like what I have to offer, good for you. If you don’t, no skin off my back. Good luck and goodbye.”
Of course I cannot be certain but that’s what I presume that’s Narendrabhai’s position. Like me, I like to think, he does not have any need for billions of dollars that others need for their self-worth. What he wants is general prosperity of Indians and if that’s what a sufficient number of Indians want, he would be happy to help in that quest. But if they don’t — if for whatever reasons they want something else — that’s fine with him too.
That’s just a conjecture and I don’t claim to read Narendrabhai’s mind. I am just saying this as a disinterested observer.
I see Narendrabhai going ahead giving others a stark choice. He does not need any of the “leaders” — either from the BJP or from the NDA partners. If they like what he has to offer, they can get on his agenda. If they don’t like what he wants, they aren’t obligated to join him. He will not compromise because his goal is a transformation of India, and which transformation cannot be done with the same people or the same mindset that brought about this state of affairs.
A friend of mine said the other day that Narendrabhai will now have to get others like Nitish Kumar to join him. I don’t think so. I think that Modi will not only not make any moves to appease the likes of Nitish Kumar but that he will take a position that makes it clear that it is he who rejects Nitish Kumar and not the other way around.
In the end, Narendrabhai’s success depends on only one thing — how ready the Indian voter is for real change, for real economic and social growth. If they are not, no amount of “democratic” elections are doing to amount to a hill of beans. If they are ready, someone like Narendrabhai cannot be stopped. If they are not, no amount of Narendrabhai compromising with the Nitish Kumars of India would make the slightest difference.
If my conjecture about Narendrabhai is correct, here’s what I think he will do. He will strike out on his own. He will not bother about the BJP leadership, he will not bother about NDA alliances, he will not bother about the RSS or the VHP leaders. He will directly go to the Indian voter and say, “I have a different deal for you. Take it if you like it or leave it. In either case, I don’t gain personally from it. Your move.”