With parliamentary elections looming in India in 2024, 28 opposition parties have formed an alliance called INDIA i.e. Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance. After its earlier meetings in Patna and Bangalaru, the 3rd 2 day meeting of INDIA just concluded in Mumbai, its main achievements being forming a 13 member Coordination Committee and 3 sub committees, and resolving to fight the forthcoming elections together ( but with the caveat ‘as far as possible’ ). However it did not announce any leader of the alliance, or convenor of the Coordination Committee.
I am no supporter of the BJP, but to my mind formation of INDIA is just a stunt, and despite all its efforts the BJP will still get a majority in the coming polls, though maybe with reduced seats, and again come to power.
The biggest problem for the members of INDIA will be seat sharing. We may consider certain states :
1. In UP, the biggest state in India, while the BJP is perceived as the common enemy, Akhilesh Yadav’s Samajwadi Party is pitted against the Congress, both seeking the crucial Muslim vote bank.
2. In West Bengal, Mamata Banerji would not be willing to give the Congress or CPM more than a token 2 or 3 seats each, because its main rival has become the BJP.
3. In Maharashtra there will be a tussle between Sharad Pawar’s NCP and Uddhav Thakre’s Shiv Sena for seats.
4. In Punjab and Delhi the tussle will be between Congress and Aam Admi Party
5. In Kerala it will be between Congress and the Left.
6. In Bihar it will be between Lalu Yadav’s RJD and Nitish Kumar’s JDU
A common factor in formation of INDIA is the desire of non BJP parties to woo the Muslim vote bank, which is particularly large and crucial in North India. Muslims regard the BJP as their main enemy, and so welcome any move to oust it from power, like formation of INDIA. Hence parties not attending INDIA meetings become suspect in the eyes of Muslims. This is the reason why Mamata Banerji attended the INDIA meeting, though she does not need any support from Congress or the left parties in West Bengal, and can fight against BJP alone.
The member parties in INDIA have nothing in common except common animosity for the BJP, just like the Janta Party formed in 1977 after the Emergency, whose constituent members had nothing in common except animosity for Indira Gandhi.
Members of INDIA have no idea how to solve India’s massive problems of poverty, unemployment, child malnutrition, lack of proper healthcare and good education, etc. Even if they come to power after winning the 2024 parliamentary elections, there will immediately be a scramble among its members for lucrative portfolios, and thereafter discord and disputes on several matters, leading to its break up, as happened to the Janta Party in 1979..
Apart from the above, as I have repeatedly said, the test of every political activity or political system is one, and only one : does it raise the standard of living of the people ? Does it give them better lives ?
The moment we ask this question we immediately realise that it matters little whether NDA or INDIA is in power. Their difference is like that between Tweedledum and Tweedledee, because in either case massive poverty, unermployment, malnutrition, lack of healthcare etc will continue under their rule..
To get rid of these great evils will require a mighty, historical, united people’s struggle and revolution, not just changes in our present political leaders within the system of parliamentary democracy. I have explained this in detail in the articles below