Deconstructing Swapan Dasgupta’s arguments

To answer some remarks & give my opinion, I have to necessarily deconstruct some arguments of Swapan.

Mr Arun Jaitley may be a darling in the media. But the organisation & party’s growth depends upon how people work together. With Mr Jaitley at the top, there will be a lot of distrust & counter leaks. Arun Jaitley has got a very bad name with BJP circles that he plants stories against rivals, leaks some information etc. Also Advani to have remote control over the party will try to put his group as Party president (Jaitley, Sushma Swaraj or Venkaiah Naidu). Advani allowed lime light only for these people because they didn’t have any mass base. He didn’t allow any leader with mass base to grow/or take lime light because they could have challenged him in various things.

Leaders with mass base like Shivraj Singh Chauhan, Vasundhara Raje will challenge nonsense from top leadership. Shivraj Singh didn’t give Rajya Sabha tickets to Advani’s nominees this time (this includes Chandan Mitra). The only reason Modi is quiet because it was Advani who stood up to Vajpayee in 2002.

Arun Jaitley might be very honest & smart speaker. But even the Advani group (Sushma Swaraj, Venkaiah Naidu etc) & other leaders will not trust him and keep fighting. On the day of results, the first person to start saying “that projection of Modi as next prime minister was one of the reasons for defeat” was Chandan Mitra. It is a common knowledge that Chandan Mitra & Arun Jaitley work together.

Swapan Dasgupta’s indirect attacks on Arun Shourie: When Swapan started questioning Shourie in his blog, many readers opposed it. So Swapan stopped it for some time. Then in TV channels, Swapan indirectly attacks Shourie. For example, after Shourie’s interview (Walk the talk) there was a program in NDTV in which Swapan & Shekhar Gupta participated, first thing Swapan did was to recite the rhyme “what a good boy I am” to take a pot shot at Arun Shourie. Then he took objection to Shourie’s suggestion of “RSS taking over”. If RSS takes over, a non-Delhi person who is Street Smart/clever like Vajpayee (Yes, Vajpayee was street smart in developing a goodie goodie image over some 10 years, he purposely didn’t go to Ayodhya on Dec 6th) might end up as president. So Swapan wants to call that person as “Manohar Lal” and ridicule him well before. Then Swapan takes it to his articles in Tehelka and other magazines.

I think Swapan understands that Arun Shourie is a towering intellectual & also a practical executioner of modernity. So he won’t take him on directly. But use snide remarks and make jovial remarks on his suggestions. Arun Shourie is a middleclass icon, which Swapan keeps talking about. When Arun Shourie talks about indiscipline of planting stories in media using 6 journalists, leaking stories – we know he is actually pointing at Arun Jaitley.

Arun Shourie’s contacts and networks are thousand times more than Swapan’s. During talks with Pakistan, our Indian side was about to agree to a complete de-militarisation of Siachin. Arun Shourie’s contacts in government machinery alerted him. So BJP leaders pressed hard with Pranab Mukherjee to change the Indian negotiating team. It was Arun Shourie who found that Arjun Singh is going to play the “backward class messiah” even before the congress spin ministers could find out.

Usually corrective actions given out by Shourie, have been bang on target in the last 2 decades. Shourie is an intellectual warrior who understands what is everybody is up to. He has his networks & contacts. Swapan is a commentator (more on post mortem side). So I would give more importance to Shourie than to Swapan.

Arun Jaitley is alleged to have worked to support the faulty nuclear deal. Swapan who has probably not read even the FMCT, NPT treaties even once, was waxing eloquence in TV studios on why we should pass the nuclear deal. Arun Shourie & to a good extant Yashwant Sinha was able to rip apart every single point put worth by the “great reformist” prime minister. Just because the media (which are in the control of Congress) support the deal, there is no need to go and fall at the feet of nuclear deal. Now that ENR technologies are totally unavailable, the true face of the deal is coming out. Even in 1998 many of our defense analysts, scientists were questioning the success of our thermonuclear device. Now that Santhanam has spoken it out in open. Arun Shourie & others understand the issue in full. But our “political commentators” , “senior journalists” who have no idea of what are nuclear agreements; future strategic scenarios; geo-politics blindly follow what the media is selling. Many of the journalists  & newspaper editors are of cranky background (from total communist/Marxist background, they all totally fell in the legs of Americans in 90’s and early 2000’s). They have no brains nor do they have Indian National interest in their mind. It is blind faith or money greasing the hands. Arun Shourie’s work in Cancun was very good. His understanding of Indian interests is extremely good. The YouTube video of Arun Shourie in World Economic Forum is a good example.

Arun Jaitley took part in a Tehelka funded conference in London. The issue with Jaitley & Swapan is that they play the game as per the agenda set by opposition & media. It is actually an easy way out. But it doesn’t help the greater Hindu/Indic movement or the party in longer term but gives very good lime light to individuals.

But persons like Modi, Arun Shourie, Kanchan Gupta etc don’t play the game as per opposition’s agenda. It is actually a very tough thing to do. Individually you will pay a heavy price, but in the helps the greater Hindu/Indic movement & the party.

Remember a huge Dharmic movement needs selfless individuals (Chanakya, Medhadithi, Subash Bose, Shama Prasad Mukherjee) and not individual ambition oriented people.

RSS also needs to understand that this “backroom consensus” is not for political party. Backroom consensus is needed in a voluntary organisation like RSS & its various affiliates. As offstumped & others in india-forum say, BJP should adopt elections for deciding posts. Without ballot, Arun Jaitley will be undermined as President even if he is brought with agreement of RSS through this “backroom consensus”

One great thing about elections & primaries is that everybody is shown where everybody stands. After primaries, all opponents like Hilary and others have to accept the verdict that Obama is the Democratic Party candidate. The internal sabotage will stop.

Arun Narendhranath says that given time, Arun Jaitley will become a mass based leader. But will he hold the leadership together given the mistrust? Can Arun Jaitley come clean on these allegations of leaks & planting stories?



5 Responses to “Deconstructing Swapan Dasgupta’s arguments”

  1. Akshar Says:

    You have de-constructed the argument well. I can clearly see that you have understood many things that most of the commentators either dont see or chose to ignore.

  2. Chakresh Mishra Says:

    The main crisis in BJP is to balance the modern youth voters – tv faces – liberalisation on one hand and hindutva ideology on other. Earlier it was done by duo of Vajpayee and Advani. Formula worked so well. Now they can reconsider same type combination. One mass leader and other organizational person.
    In my opinion Jaitely-Modi can be that combo. But it has to emerge by consensus.
    I applaud current episode in BJP as it is the only democratic way to evolve as a party in a era when all other (and I mean it ALL OTHER except lefts) are family business.

  3. Akshar Says:

    What is Hindutva?

    Can someone plz tell me.

  4. gopal Says:

    Arun Shourie may be a great intellectual…but i must confess, I don’t know much about him.

    I remember him only as the former editor of the Indian Express during the mid-80’s.

    I distinctly remember the tagline of the newspaper in those days… it said:
    “The Truth Involves us all”…

    In the name of truth, Arun Shourie & Ram Jethmalani carried on a sustained and vicious campaign against PM Rajiv Gandhi. Their unabashed hatred for the man was too obvious.

    I remember Mani Shanker Aiyar’s smart rejoinder to the Express tagline… He wrote in one of his columns –

    “The truth involves us all, Lies involve only Indian express”. Cute.

    To think that this highly opinionated and vicious ‘intellectual’ can revive the BJP’s sagging fortunes is wishful thinking indeed.

  5. Ajay Says:


    Arun Shourie is noted for standing up and speaking the truth even if it hurts.

    Rajiv Gandhi was a joker who had to go abroad for “studies”, because it would get very difficult for a buffon like him to pass graduation exams here.

    He rode the sympathy wave of his mother’s assassination to become PM. Congress and Rajiv were cut to size in the next election.

    Your hatred for Shourie too is obvious.

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