Friday, June 9, 2023

The Fragile Political Monopoly – a new beginning in Bihar


By SK Nag

Maybe this year, RJD will miss the final hot seat, but this gentleman will make it happen to the next elections. Gone are the days when political brand image used to carry a lot of everlasting faith in leadership, which helped enjoy the win with rhetorical manifestos alone. But the changing electoral behaviour resulting from social media-driven crowd wisdom, the political battlefield has changed. Monopoly will cease to exist hereafter. The perspective of validation of candidature is different now than it used to be earlier. Earlier parties ruled many states enjoyed an unvalidated loyalty based on the sentiment of love and affection. Achieving victory was a different political approach. Now the situation is much more accountable.  Bihar this time has shown the whole nation how peacefully an election process can happen. In earlier days, the Bihar election used to see a lot of political gunfights. It is currently a learning all state must see how Bihar is fast changing its perception of living. So the expectations from the leaders are changing. 

The politics of the globe has changed, so has ours. But in this changing paradigm, how does one make himself election ready is a big question now. Especially for the dynast who are gradually getting into politics, it will be an uphill task to unlearn their predecessors’ strategy, which they have imbibed since childhood. RJD’s succession plan, for that matter, does not indicate that traditionalist viewpoint. For the next dynastic power transfer to a competent leader undoubtedly happened in RJD’s case, and surely Mr Tejaswi can lead this party to the next level. The person who can articulate more clearly to the nation would be successful in the coming days. RJD chief has proven his political upbringing skill to take his party forward. Indeed, he will politically and potentially manoeuvre the party in the coming days in a much better way. This recent Bihar election has proven that RJD has not lost the ground connect. They are in full knowledge of crowd perception about Bihar. JDU, although it will be in the ruler seat, in the end, harnessing BJP’s support, but it calls for an implicit introspection at a later date.

Though Bihar is an epicentre of caste-based politics due to its inherent social structure, BJP has an advantage by default. What is left to be seen is how the government will take shape to secure their future. An important takeaway in this election is the citizen expectation from the party. This is a generation that believes in accountability. The charismatic leadership concept is gone, and the loyalty has become very fragile. Thanks to social media-driven crowd wisdom, comparable expectations have made the battle more expectation oriented. The caste & religion did not work so well to outnumber RJD. The employment issue raised in the political campaign has shown how the Biharis rising above the caste system responded to this election. On ground development was a matter of great concern, which discouragingly affected JDU. So it is a good job done by a first-timer on the political battlefield. He has subtly won the coveted hearts of Biharis by acquiring more numbers than BJP and became the single largest party. Whoever becomes the CM in these five years, the plan should be only development, keeping aside religion-based politics. Bihar election shows how the next election, BJP, should strategize to replace the current government in the neighbouring state, West Bengal. Chief Minister candidate in West Bengal should be a person like Mr Swapan Dasgupta, who understands Bengal better than any other air-dropped person just before election.

Globally the geographical boundary is gradually diminishing, and cultural osmosis is taking place. However, politicians are still promoting religion-based politics without contemplating the mindset change of the young generation. But the traditional value system and culture are taking a back seat and failed to accept the fractal rule of inheritance. It is in no way adding any credibility to the current young generation. They are very sure what they want. Self-development and growth are top of their list. Indeed, nothing will be imbibed at face value without validating. Either social media acceptance or personal perception is the process of validation they accept, which makes the political battlefield severely volatile. Leaders do not enjoy loyalty currently, like in the old days. This is a time of believing in momentary love, which does not have any credible commitment to long term loyalty. The political monopoly is fragile. The liking is short-lived and exceedingly volatile. Therefore brand value in any transaction is gradually disappearing. New pseudo-liberal thinking does not give space to entertain such an old philosophy of life. Conclusively they want a change but do not know what that change is. But we understand the systematic transfer of political wisdom in dynastic politics is very important. Bihar has shown the nation how diligently, without difficulties, RJD has done it to live in political life in the coming decades.

(Author is Industrial Engineer, Fellow Valuer, Chartered Engineer, BEE approved Energy Expert and Industry Mentor. The views expressed are personal opinion of the author. He can be reached at [email protected])

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