Sparks flew on a Sunday debate when professed Modi supporters clashed with official BJP spokesperson about lack of action against Mother-Son duo for corruption. It was not isolated incident. Before this, there have been articles, pointers on Social Media from known BJP supporters, including this writer, criticising the government on certain policies and lack of desired velocity expected of this government. There have been more angry reactions from identified non-Left figures than earlier. While this has gladdened the hearts of bitter foes of BJP, the unquestioning supporters of Modi, called ‘bhakts’ by detractors, are very upset at this public show of disunity. Some would think that, those who question the party they support can’t be true bhakts or supporters.

This is not really true. Bharatiya culture has a strong tradition of questioning the Guru and Guru must respond patiently till the shishya or disciple is satisfied.  Geeta is nothing but response to persistent questioning of Arjuna. All Upanishads are, but gurus responding to questions of shishya. Bhagwan Buddha said, “Don’t believe in me, till you are convinced.” Guru Nanak Dev too convinced his opponents logically, never questioning their sincerity. So, questioning the one whom you believe in is not a sign of dissent, but of belief. Do you question your enemy? No. Can you question ‘The Family’? No. Ask Sanjay Jha and many before him.

So, let us not get distressed if supporters of Modi ji or BJP raise questions. The criticism of BJP by its supporters springs from deep faith in leadership of Narendra Modi. This faith is built on his image of incorruptible character, his strong sense of commitment to the nation and his unorthodox, non-conventional thinking. The expectations have been set high, and you can’t blame his supporters for this. The expectations are of superfast deliveries on all fronts, discounting the hurdles that are created by vested interests. But, sometimes the critical supporters simply fail to see why progress could not be made. Watching some of the great economic and social welfare measures unrolled at record pace in first term of Modi ji, perhaps raised the expectations higher. Some of the long held commitments were on to-do list.

Advent of Modi 2.0 didn’t disappoint. Suddenly we saw flurry of action – Jammu And Kashmir (check), Ram Mandir (check), Gender justice for Muslim  women (check), taking care of orphans of Partition, the persecuted minorities in neighbouring countries with CAA. (check). NPR/NCR put into actionable (check). Afterall, which nation doesn’t have NPR and NCR?

Then, the Wuhan/Corona Virus struck. And everything just got locked down. It is not that people don’t understand, and supporters don’t understand. But, when they see many things that aren’t stuck because of Wuhan/Corona Virus epidemic, there is sense of unease. I meet large cross-section of people who believe that I can simply call the PM and tell him what they feel or I feel. So, they pour their hearts out, their problems and uneasiness. I have to disappoint them and tell them, I don’t really have the key to his house! So, what bothers BJP supporters these days? Just a few critical pointers –

  1. Economic Policies – All the budgets and Wuhan/Corona virus related financial packages are more tuned to the corporates, the rich and the poor. Middle class and MSME feel left out. Government has noble intentions about where to spend money, accepted. But, it has no effective policies for those who create wealth and revenue. Some BJP loyalist economists will jump on me explaining ‘hajaar’ (1000) things done by this regime. But, something is amiss, with some tiny grating stones deliberately left in the smooth implementation chain of policies by some clever souls. The most loyal and hard core vocal supporters are feeling cheated and  mumbling loudly now. It is not a secret that MSME sector is in very bad shape. Even lifelong BJP workers are nonplussed.
  2. Action on Corrupt – Yes, action is being taken. IAS and bankers have borne the brunt of these actions. But, politicians are strutting around as if nothing has changed. This riles up every Indian. They don’t know that police and judiciary work at creakingly slow and strange ways. The 70 year old ecosystem hasn’t yet given up. Charges get diluted as cases move. Some investigating agency goofs up ‘providentially’, like in 2G. Some cases like National Herald remain stuck for 6 years at ED table. But, no minister or leader has tried to explain this clearly. TV debates, today, are not the places to communicate calmly.
  3. Education – No BJP supporter can justify 6 years of inaction on horribly biased syllabus and text books in schools and colleges. Much touted New Education Policy was delayed in the first term.  It was presented in second term but no actual work based on it has been done so far. When BJP ministers proffer weak excuses, it naturally riles up the supporters. They are worried about their brainwashed children, who come out schools feeling inferior about themselves and the nation, and have not an iota of an idea about great culture and knowledge of India, nor of dharma, the life blood of Bharat.
  4. Information & Broadcasting and Culture – The kind of entertainment being dished out is demeaning, abusive, hateful and cringe worthy. First it was TV, not rising above Nagins and scheming Saas-Bahus that actually debase and weaken our strong family system. Then, the OTT platform came. It has given chance to the worst perverts to project their frustrated sexual fantasies and anti-Hindu, divisive caste narratives. The government claims it has no hold. And it doesn’t even try! When the Culture ministry proposes a lifelong anti-BJP small time actor as Chairman of prestigious institution like Sahitya Academy, supporters wonder, where is this government going? You can’t blame them. When BJP CM of Goa invests heavily into St Xavier’s memorial, who initiated the process of infamous Inquisition, but offers no funds for ancient temples or a museum on inquisition or Hindu holocausts, supporters wonder if it is the same party they chose.
  5. Temple Control – Hindus, including VHP, have been moving heaven and earth to get back control of Hindu temples. There are cases in the courts. But, when BJP’s own state government acquires all temples and makes politicians the prime controlling authority, they wonder, what is going on.

Supporters can list out 100 more issues. I have just pointed out glaring pains points. Reader will note that except Finance, nothing else is affected by Wuhan/Corona virus. It is inertia or fear of the Left-Secular cabal. Haven’t BJP supporters given enough strength to it, so it doesn’t have to worry about these anarchists?

The irritated well-wishers of BJP are like family members who crib when their most talented member doesn’t come upto expectations despite whole hearted support. BJP leaders, rather than getting upset, should be thankful to their benefactors for speaking out with good intent. Unquestioning bhakts are not good for nation’s health. BJP bhakts are bhakts of Motherland, hence support it. They wish to see the renaissance of their dear nation – Bharat, nothing more.

Ratan Sharda

DISCLAIMER: The author is solely responsible for the views expressed in this article. The author carries the responsibility for citing and/or licensing of images utilized within the text.