BJP was flying high. The budget was to be a game changer. As the acting FM Piyush Goel announced concessions and relief to various sections excited BJP MP’s thumped their desks. They were joined by their leader the PM. And on the opposite side sulking in his seat was the Congress President, Rahul Gandhi.
Rahul has had a few good months. Congress won three states of MP,Chattisgarh and Rajasthan. He has been announcing various schemes to influence the voter but the announcements of FM had turned the table. Modi and his BJP now had the upper hand.
But as Harold Wilson had said, a week is a long time in politics. BJP was not allowed to savour its moment before full war broke out in Kolkata over CBI ‘s bid to question the Kolkata police chief Rajeev Kumar in the Saradha and related scams. This allowed the always willing CM Mamta Banerjee to give full display to her histrionics. She sat on three days dharna and in the end called it victory even though the SC asked the police commissioner to join CBI enquiry in Shillong.
But this was Mamta’s moment as she walked up and down the dharna stage. She forced rest of the opposition to rally behind her. Sort of next V P Singh. Supporting her was also Rahul Gandhi who in 2016 had accused Mamta of “protecting those looting Bengal “. Our netas thrive on short public memory.
It’s really sad that for them every thing is politics. The entire attention is on the conflict between the Centre and the recalcitrant state govt but no one is paying attention to the lakhs who have been looted in this scam. Mamta has also never tried to get to the bottom of it. But this Mamta interlude has come at a wrong time for the BJP. The entire focus has shifted from the Budget and the relief proposed to the shenanigans of the CM of Bengal.