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COMMENTARY- Uttar Pradesh Order behind Anarchy

Amaresh Mishra UTTAR PRADESH (UP) once more has given evidence of the 'Kola Khel' chat is fast becoming the sign post of national politics, A few days before Atal Behari Vajpayee won the vote of confidante, The speaker of the state assembly, while giving judgment on the BSP defection case, threw away even the minimum facade of legality. The case involved the status of 12 BSP MLAs who had voted for Kalyan Singh on October 21, 1997. Given the original BSP strength of 67 members, simple arithmetic ordained their falling under the purview of the anti-defection disqualification clause. On the trial of strength held on February 26.7 more MLAs defected but the total still fell short of the required 23 members which could have bailed the 12 out. The speaker sat on the case for more than five months and then delivered the verdict that to his knowledge the number of defectors on October 21 was 26! Seven members then went back to the party reducing the number to 19 on February 26! But since the issue was voting on October 21, the 19 detectors qualify for a separate party status!! If only 7 members went back to the parent party, how come 14 out of the 26 were sitting with the BSP till February 26, according to the list circulated by the assembly secretariat 7 Instead of ending here, the absurdities go on to incorporate the 'fact' of Mayawati not being authorised to issue the whip on October 21! As per the speaker, the whip was actually a threat for one defector informed him orally about its 'real' nature! More such bland and blatant concoctions are likely to come out when the 148 page judgment comes out in full. Kesri Nath Tripathi, its author, is an upper caste Allahabadi lawyer and this breed has a sub- breed which can justify an open murder as non-murder without batting an eyelid. He has pulled off the biggest fraud in the history of parliamentary democracy. With this one act, the BJP has shown that only those who live in glass houses can throw stones at others. The party has legitimised illegitimacy now it cannot complain when it gets back something more sensational in return.

UTTAR PRADESH-From Goonda Raj to Kanoon Raj

From 'Goonda Raj' to 'Kanoon Raj'? Amaresh Mishra Notwithstanding the rhetorical exchanges between Mayavati and Mulayam Singh Yadav, it is a fact that politics in UP is undergoing a transformation.

UTTAR PRADESH-Backwards and Dalits like a Back Seat

'Backwards' and 'Dalits' Take a Back Seat Amaresh Mishra FOR an election which appears all set, once again, to decide the contours of national politics, the build up to the latest electoral round in UP is pathetically devoid of lustre. All political parties have hyped their importance for their respective camps -the United Front (UF) has gone as far as to hinge the fate of its government at the centre on its outcome, the BJP knows that after developments in Gujarat and the court summons to Advani in the hawala case it is left to UP to conduct salvaging operations, and the Congress is waiting for its resurrection. The BSP is finally making a bid for power and the chief of the Samaj wadi Party is fighting for his political survival. But the crucial bind in which the parties find themselves is not being translated into raising of the political pitch. The party which is seen to be the front runner, the BJP, is not even frontally attacking its main rival the UF led by the SP and all other parties are somehow failing to record any level of enthusiasm amongst their workers. Even the type of issues that were dominant till a few years ago, like Mandal and mandir are conspicuous by their absence and the familiar invocation of populist issues is also missing.

Resurrecting the Congress

The post-election realignment offerees, on an anti-BJP, anti-communal platform, disregarding all other issues, is making way for a Congress come back, wiping out decades of anti-Congressism and will blunt the edge of anti-establishment politics. A new agenda has been set for the big bourgeoisie with the possibilities of a 'transfer of power' to new groups among the dalits, backwards and regional entities, ensuring continued support. The vacillations of Left forces on whether or not to join the United Front government show that they have, as yet, not reckoned with the emerging reality.

UP Opportunity for the Left

Amaresh Mishra With social polarisation favouring SP-BSP suffering a setback, Mulayam Singh's revival in UP depends on his aligning with Janata Dal and the left forces.

UTTAR PRADESH-After Mathura BJP s Emerging Strategy-After Mathura: BJP s Emerging Strategy

After Mathura: BJP's Emerging Strategy Amaresh Mishra The entire Mathura episode shows how much the political scene in Uttar Pradesh has changed since the Ayodhya days. The BJP had apparently hoped to consolidate and widen its constituency in the context of the break-up of the ruling alliance in the state and the dependence of the government in power on its support. This it has not been able to do.

UTTAR PRADESH-Cracks in the Alliance

Cracks in the Alliance Amaresh Mishra The SP-BSP combine's plan to consolidate electoral gains by promoting the dalit-Muslim-OBC alliance is falling apart. There are clear indications that in the bid to stay in power, Mulayam Singh will resort to any means, including unparliamentary and undemocratic manoeuvres.

UTTAR PRADESH-Cracks in the Alliance

Cracks in the Alliance Amaresh Mishra The BSP has made no pretence of pursuing radical politics. A mainstream following which it has sought to mobilise by seeking the support of the Muslims is now in jeopardy.

UTTAR PRADESH-Evading the Land Issue

countries." France subsidises the production of 150 French films, by raising $ 350 'million annually through levies on TV sets and rentals for vidco-cassettes. Clearly, it was not going to give in to America's film industry. It justified the quota, the taxes, and the rentals on the ground that these were all essential for the defence of France against the arrogance of the American' industries trying to' 'impose [their] domination by any means." And "after all, the livelihood of 70,000 people in the French Film Industry depends on this." It was December 13; hardly 48 hours were left to come to an agreement, but the French foreign minister was still saying: "The conditions for a definitive agreement have not yet been secured. America has been showing intransigence on the audio-visual question, particularly on the cinema issue. Then there are questions yet to be solved on shipping, financial services, any aircraft subsidies." The US was furious; its second largest export industry, after aircraft, is the movie industry; sales in Europeralone in 1992 were worth nearly $ 3.7 billion. Clinton's political base is California, the home of the film industry, and in October 1993 he had declared in Hollywood: "audio-visual products [are] linked to the vital job issue, it [is] a fairness issue as well for America. " However, the issue being politically explosive, and the time running out, America came forward, ready to compromise. It asked Europe to lift the quota system on American films shown at prime-time and allow broadcasting stations to put their programmes on air without a time-bar. It wanted a portion of the tax collected by France on American films to be given to the American companies and artists, as it was "well known" that Europeans often copied their work and escaped paying royalties. It was even prepared to reinvest the money in Europe. But the European Community rejected the offer outright. Even the rather half-hearted mediation efforts of Chancellor Kohl

Emerging Reality after Ayodhya

Amaresh Mishra In spite of the fact that the communal divide in the aftermath of the demolition of the mosque has percolated down to the villages, the BJP has been unable to achieve a large-scale expansion of its mass base.

UTTAR PRADESH - Approaching a Decisive Juncture

Approaching a Decisive Juncture Amaresh Mishra The peculiar contours of the peasant question in UP have been brought to the fore by the police firing on agitating sugarcane farmers in Ramkola, Deoria district. The agitationists were small and middle peasants who were demanding the payment of dues owed to them by the local state-run, private and landlord dominated co-operative sugar units. These dues total more than Rs 350 crore.
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