Anti-CAA protest: Are opposition parties credible enough to impress the silent majority?

first_imgMany of my friends are worried about continuous anti-CAA protests. Initially, there were some violent protests but after that most of anti-CAA protests are peaceful but continuous. For example, Delhi’s Shaheen Bagh sit-in protest is continuing for more than a month represented by even elderly protesters as well as children. Many other places in the country also followed the Shaheen Bagh style of a continuous sit-in protest. Most of the central universities are also protesting. Although there are also pro-CAA rallies, most of the media coverage is on Delhi based anti-CAA protests.The concern of my friends is whether Narendra Modi government will be compelled to withdraw the CAA and subsequently NPR and NRC? BJP lost power in Maharashtra as its ally Shiv Sena dumped it. It was decimated in Jharkhand election and likely to lose Delhi Assembly election too. Thus, the Narendra Modi-led government may be afraid of taking bold decisions in the coming time because electoral loss and continual protest always induce huge pressure on any political party.However, I don’t agree that this government is going to succumb to any pressure that too by the limited protests or loss of assembly elections. Whatever protests are being done is mostly supported by left-wing political parties or Congress-led UPA parties. In national politics, neither UPA nor Left has earned any credibility till now. There’s a silent majority which sees everything and knows everything. Media highlight may be there but then people know what’s right and what’s wrong. Let me give some examples.BJP lost three big Hindi heartland states just before the 2019 general election. It hardly won Gujrat with a slender margin and couldn’t win a majority in Karnataka. But then it won the 2019 general election very big in those states apart from getting more seats in West Bengal, Odisha, Telangana etc. That means Indian voters/public are aware of the difference between regional/provincial issues and national issues. They gave a mandate to Narendra Modi to fulfil his electoral promises as per its manifesto and it is doing so. I believe it will continue for NRC, UCC, NPC and many more without coming under pressure irrespective of assembly election results or protests organised/supported by Left or Congress.After the win of 2014 general election, Narendra Modi in a meeting said that it’s impossible to convince people who are anti-BJP or anti-Modi. Thus, the effort must be focussed on convincing people/community and others who are not hard-core anti-BJP or anti-Modi. I think he is following the same and going on doing what he has promised or what he thinks is the best. Demonetisation was a bold step. The subsequent widespread agitation appeared that the entire country is against Narendra Modi. But 2017 UP assembly election result proved otherwise.Narendra Modi’s strength is the silent majority (don’t read in terms of religion) who support his acts. Let me give some example of the power of this silent majority. During intolerance debate, not only anti-Modi group of India but also many international intellectuals questioned BJP governments and silence of Narendra Modi on lynching cases. But then silent majority displayed their support in a different manner. Bollywood superstar Sharukh Khan and Aamir Khan also endorsed the intolerance factor but as a consequence, their movies failed in the box office. That doesn’t mean that their movies are bad, rather it means that the majority of people didn’t accept the intolerance campaign literally boycotting their movies. Later on, SRK almost begged pardon for his remarks.In this anti-CAA protest too the silent majority displayed their support to Narendra Modi. How? Deepika Padukone entered into JNU for a few minutes basically to promote her film ‘Chhapaak’ and didn’t utter a single word. But this created a bad effect on the film ‘Chhapaak’ in the box office. I wouldn’t say the movie is a flop but definitely, it couldn’t gross the amount of revenue as expected. Even Meghana Gulzar, the director of the excellent movie ‘Chhapaak’ finally said in response to Deepika’s JNU visit that ‘We have to be able to separate between the personal and professional. What somebody does in their personal life and what they have done as a professional in a film needs to be looked at separately’. I fully agree to this, however, I don’t think the politicisation of any issue or extending solidarity to any political issue remains ever personal. That way people took Deepika’s JNU visit.Many of my friends admitted that they were anxious to see the movie as everyone is sympathetic to acid-attack-victims and also, they admire acting of Deepika Padukone, yet they resisted to see the movie in cinema halls post misadventure of Deepika Padukone to JNU. But they will definitely see the movie when that will be screened on TV channels.That proves that the silent majority rejected the violent protests as well as the politicisation of protests. Narendra Modi’s strength is this silent public who doesn’t react openly but not only votes Narendra Modi but also rejects celebrities if they are biased to Narendra Modi or indulge themselves in the politicisation of any issue especially against Narendra Modi.Regarding protest in central universities, let me clarify that all the protests are not necessarily anti-CAA protests. The basic/common protest in pan Indian central universities is against fee hikes. Some students belonging to left parties or Congress add CAA along with fee hike in their protests.Opposition parties should understand the nerve of the people. Opposition for sake of opposition doesn’t impress nowadays’ public. It’s time that the opposition parties must earn credibility. To earn credibility, they have to indulge in constructive opposition role. If you oppose everything under the sun, then people may not listen to your valid objections too. Too much politicisation in everything would lead to loss of credibility in cases where there’ even absolute merit.Few politicians realise this. Those are Arvind Kejriwal, Navin Patnaik, KCR and even Jagmohan. They don’t oppose each and everything and thus whenever they oppose something it carries credibility.I believe Congress, Left and others must learn from them if they want to earn credibility. You may not support everything but you shouldn’t oppose everything else, Narendra Modi, all the way even in 2024 general election.last_img

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