I write this as an individual who happens to be Muslim, not as a representative of the Muslim community. My attempt here is to explain the “voice in my head” – the rationale behind voting for Modi. It could be interpreted as an act of selfishness (probably, it may well be one) but IMO it is keeping in mind that my act isn’t adversely affecting the lives of my fellow Indians. This is basically a gist of what I feel about the man and the hopes I have from him. These uncertain times have forced every Indian to make a choice – Maintain Status Quo or attempt to make our world better. I feel Modi is the only option we have to choose the latter.
Let us first begin with the contentious issues:
MODI HAS ACTIVELY/IMPLICITLY PLAYED A PART IN ORCHESTRATING THE 2002 ANTI MUSLIM RIOTS
The allegation has time and again been dismissed by the courts and a SIT monitored by the Supreme Court. Enough has been debated on it & it’s important now the opposition relinquishes this matter and strive to rehabilitate the victims instead.
MODI HAS NOT APOLOGIZED FOR THE 2002 RIOTS
Why does one apologize? what is the motive behind it? An apology is only effective when you never repeat the mistakes of your past. There has not been a single riot (at-least nothing major) in Gujarat since 2002. If we put this in contrast with the Samajwadi Party who claims to help Muslims, there have been over 100 rioting incidents in a year in UP! Modi has let his actions speak for themselves and the Muslims of Gujarat are his witnesses. Critics cite his Gaurav Yatra speeches (he delivered after the 2002 riots) as a sign of hate mongering. Having gone through his speeches extensively, I realized that it was mostly aimed at leveraging the charged political atmosphere at the time. Every politician including Gandhiji has utilized the element of rhetoric to put his message across. If Modi had really given hate speeches, he would have been penalized under the law. I don’t recall the opposition at the time dragging Modi to courts…I don’t blame them because there wasn’t any case.
US HAS NOT ISSUED ANY VISA TO MODI
It’s actually a hilarious argument this. US has bombed nearly 30 countries since WW-II & their war crimes are no mystery. It’s obvious to me that Human Rights is not the issue, it’s the apprehension of having not able to bully/control a decisive/nationalist leader that sends a chill down their spines. Mr. Modi has no swiss bank accounts or hawala transactions unlike Mrs. Sonia Gandhi. How will the monopolists threaten/bribe him now?
MODI DOES NOT WEAR A SKULL CAP, HENCE DISRESPECTING THE MUSLIM COMMUNITY
It would be untruthful of me as a conscientious human being to not admit that the average Hindu is more liberal than an average Muslim. How are the lying/conniving skull cap wearing politicians better than Modi? What have they done for the Muslims? Do they look at the Muslims as Indians or aliens? Modi is the only politician I’ve seen in a long time who treats Indian Muslims as Indians. That is automatically implied in his statement “Secularism means India first”. Whatever his personal reason for not wearing a skull cap maybe (fair to say he’s not the classic liberal), he has certainly not denied the constitutional rights to any community & hence proven his secular credentials.
GUJARAT DEVELOPMENT IS A HOAX
Some of the world’s leading economists like Arvind Panagariya, Jagdish Bhagwati, Bibek Debroy etc…don’t think so. Infact the planning commission of India & NSSO concur with them. Most importantly, the people of Gujarat would not have elected him 3 times if the development model was a hoax. This is by far the weakest argument Modi’s critics have raised time and again.
MODI IS AFRAID OF TAKING TOUGH QUESTIONS FROM THE MEDIA
Even Mr. Modi must have regretted about his failure of handling the media. He’s certainly not the best person in the world to sugar coat, smooth talk & suck up to Media inquiries. This I believe is a rare quality nowadays. What good is a glib liberal talker? It’s far better to have an honest man attempting to make his point. So what if he ran away from the Karan Thapar show? Ram Jethmalani did it twice (and he is still the best/highest paid lawyer in the country). Who knows what Mr. Modi’s mental state must have been like at the time? After being compared to Hitler, called a “Maut ka Saudagar”, Fascist, Pogromist etc…for more than 7 years!!! The anguish would have driven a person like me to insanity perhaps.
MODI”S RISE IS BECAUSE OF APCO & RSS PROPAGANDA
Modi did make use of APCO & a dedicated IT team who were driven by BJP’s ideology. That’s a fact. But someone please tell me how is that unethical? If you have done something good for your community or society at large, is it evil to publicize your achievements? Some advertisements may go overboard…sure & they must be mocked/criticized. The abusive internet trolls are not the ones making decisions for Modi & they’re certainly not the ones who made Modi the BJP PM Candidate. I believe Modi’s critics have acted as his greatest PR agents. They have managed to put him in the headlines all along. It’s important we don’t trivialize the major issues by providing equal debating space to non sequiturs like trolling etc… The issue becomes a propaganda when we choose to ignore the facts of the matter & highlight the superficiality/inanities surrounding the matter. So what are the facts about Modi’s rise? Simple : His Governance track record of 3 terms.
The Alarmists all over have been able to propound this theory of “Modi creating a fascist state”…especially with the elections going on & with the desperate attempt to change the mind of the voter. Absurd comparisons to Nazi Germany must be treated with contempt. It is an undisputed fact that no one can shred the secular fabric of our nation. Our history bares witness to the fact of how tolerant our society is/was. The major driving force behind all the communal divide that exists today is the Congress Party. From opposing UCC to innumerable riots/massacres at the hands of Congress leaders, the facade of “sainthood” should have been exposed way long back. Congress has carried forth the British policy of divide & rule…why do you think Rahul Gandhi says “Congress Ek Soch hai” ? This “Soch” has divided the people of this country, robbed us of our rich Historical legacy & most importantly halted the progress & growth of our people.
In recent times, a mere “hogwash” of a party has emerged. Aam Admi Party has no clear economic, defense, foreign etc… policies. I would not vote for them because they’re not organised & genuinely focused on rabble-rousing rather than governing our vast nation. To further elaborate my point, I would refer you to Sadanand Dhume’s article on AAP & Kejriwal.
My Expectations from the Man:
1) Decentralization of power & Small Govt (which he has mentioned very often)
2) Boosting the use of clean energy sources and reducing the dependence on Saudi Oil. (Gujarat is one of the leading states in Solar Energy production)
3) Revive the Manufacturing Sector & popularize/mainstream vocational/skilled jobs for Medium/Large Scale Industries.
4) Introduce umpteen reforms for Tax, Police, Judiciary, Real Estate Investments, FDI etc…deregulating fuel prices, curbing Fiscal & CADs, Privatizing & Disinvestments etc..
5) CBI Autonomy
6) Uniform Civil Code (or at-least weakening the influence of Sharia Law & WAKF Board)
7) Cybersecurity & Domestic defense production
8) A Pro Asia Centric Foreign Policy & increased participation in groups like BRICS, G20 etc…
9) Sanctioning covert ops/drone strikes in Jihadi training camps (especially PoK) & increased cooperation with Afghanistan to eradicate the Taliban
10) Section 377 is a stain on our democracy. I know it’s too much to ask of Mr. Modi, but please do consider.
These were some of the points I could remember for the moment. I truly hope Modi will begin to propagate the message of “Integral Humanism”…a definitive path for a right wing party this country needs for the moment.
I am not a Modi bhakt. I have been trolled by Modi followers for many years now. I will call out the imperfections in the man, when I come across them. But for the moment, Modi is the ONLY realistic option we have for this country. I’m not saying that you vote blindly for every BJP Candidate out there. Please check his background & track record. If you find any criminal cases, then vote for the most honest candidate in your area. In case you find a scenario where all the candidates are clean, I would suggest you vote for the man who will help Modi become the Prime Minister of this great nation.
PS: I wrote this article in a couple of hours. Please forgive me if you find any Grammatical errors, typing errors or spelling mistakes. Time & Proof reader are luxuries I don’t have🙂