New Delhi: Setting the agenda for 2019 Lok Sabha elections, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Friday penned part 5 of the series and shared it on social media. (Also read: BJP to Release First List of 100 Candidates on Saturday)
Jaitley titled his post ‘Agenda 2019 – Part – 5: Prime Minister Modi and Aspirational India Will Prevent India From Becoming a Dynastic Democracy’, and shared its salient parts on his Twitter handle as well.
He said what distinguished the Narendra Modi-led government was its leadership itself. “It is precisely for this reason that India will witness an election where the people will get an opportunity to endorse PM Modi’s leadership and performance of the past five years. ‘Modi Hai to Mumkin Hai’,” he wrote.
Jaitley went on to ask what the criteria for electing the government in the world’s largest democracy should be. “Should it be on the basis of leadership quality, policy, ideology, performance or on the basis of dynasties and family charismas? I am sure, PM Modi and aspirational India will prevent India from becoming a dynastic democracy,” he said.
He claimed that it was Jawaharlal Nehru who had sown “the seeds to convert India into a dynastic democracy” by ignoring “a galaxy of tall national leaders of the Congress Party” and grooming his daughter Smt. Indira Gandhi as his successor. “He made her the Congress President ahead of many other seniors,” said Jaitley.
For a brief period, Jaitley said, the grand old party did try to get rid of the “dynasty’s shackles” after the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi. “However, very soon Smt. Sonia Gandhi took over as longest serving President of the party” before passing the baton to her son, Rahul.
The Minister said that the cadre of such dynastic parties owed loyalty only to the leader. “In most cases, the leader amassed wealth and the party functioned like a personal property of the family & the party became a crowd around the dynastic family.”
While the leaders of ‘dynastic parties’ are corrupt and their survival becomes the agenda of the party, Jaitley said, “the impact of such parties on politics, policy and governance has been quite adverse coupled with their capacity to make a difference in the arithmetic of coalition politics. Family owned parties compromise ethics in public life, leading to a fall in ethical standards of governance.”
Hence, he said, the strength of our democracy can only come to the fore once “the myth of dynasties is finally buried and these parties are taken over by men of competence and merit. That will provide Indians with a choice.”
The 2014 LS elections echoed realisations of aspirational India that it is only men of merit, competence and integrity that matter, said Jaitley, adding that he was sure this trend will continue in 2019. He said, “PM Modi & New India will together demolish the dynasties.”