State Assembly Election results, a wake-up call for secular politics: Popular Front

Tue, 03/21/2017 - 11:45 -- dl_editor

The Central Secretariat of Popular Front of India, in a statement issued after its meeting chaired by Chairman E Abubacker, has said that the assembly election results of five states are a wake-up call for secular politics in India. Unless different political parties that exist in the name of secularism are not ready to make a thorough introspection now and reinforce their loyalty to the principles they claim to uphold, even their own existence cannot not be saved.
Along with other factors, it is anti-incumbency sentiment that is reflected more in the election results. People in different states have voted against the existing governments. Yet, BJP’s massive victory in states like Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand is proof of the success of their divisive tactics, meticulous planning and hard homework. Sangh Parivar could succeed in diverting people’s dissatisfaction and anger with their state governments by creating anti-minority vehemence and polarizing people on religious lines. It is clear from the UP election result that secular forces did not learn their lessons from the debacle they had in last parliamentary elections. As usual secular parties SP and BSP fought each other as principal enemies and provided an easy walk over for communal BJP. The secular parties that project themselves as alternatives to BJP does not have any genuine interest in protecting secularism. While the so called saviours of secularism fought each other helping BJP, the burden of protecting secularism became only a Muslim liability.
The BJP propaganda that Muslims voted for them in large numbers is also baseless. A careful analysis of the voting pattern would show that BJP succeeded in consolidating Hindu votes while Muslim votes were split among rival secular combinations.
It is also condemnable the way BJP captured power in Goa and Manipur. In spite of the fact that majority of the people rejected BJP in both state, they have managed to come to power with the help of purchasable charlatan leaders and the Governors who are loyal to their masters in the central government. They are undermining the very idea of democracy by forcing upon people the parties they voted against.
The future of secular parties lies in their regaining the lost credibility and their reinforcing commitment to people and principles. The fact that BJP did not get majority in three states shows that there is no sweeping trend in the country in favour of Hindutva unlike the propaganda suggests. Rather, from the number of votes won by parties like AAP, it is clear people are ready to vote for the newly emerging trends of principled, secular and corruption-free politics.
The serious allegation of possible manipulation of Electronic Voting Machine by different parities cannot be dismissed as baseless. It noteworthy that countries that technologically more advanced still depend on ballot papers because of the transparency it provides for re-checking. The former Chief Election Commissioner, S.Y. Quraishi, has asked the Election Commission of India to clear the doubts raised by leaders of various political parties over tampering of Electronic Voting Machines (EVM) to protect the integrity of the polling process. The Central Secretariat of Popular Front demanded to re-introduce ballot paper system in place of EVMs in all forthcoming elections in order to restore the confidence of voters in our electoral process

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