24 January, 2021

Corporate Kiss Of Death?

Politicians need their money, but friendships with corporates is not always healthy

Corporate Kiss Of Death?
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

Most politicians know it in their gut that India shines only for the rich while what works with the masses are sops such as free TVs or rice, preferably doled out by a charismatic state-level leader. It also helps the process of re-election of a regime if the state is NOT seen as an agent of corporate lobbies, out to clear lands and forests. Indeed, overplaying the corporate hand has damaged leaders and parties as opposed to helping them.

The NDA regime learned it the hard way in 2004—the plain fact that even at a time of economic growth and apparent progress, India does not shine for the majority of its people. Atal Behari Vajpayee was very sceptical about the India Shining pitch at the time. But L.K. Advani and Pramod Mahajan were convinced and consensus man Vajpayee went along with it. After the defeat, Pramod Mahajan told this correspondent: “I’m ready to take res­ponsibility as I never listened to Atalji’s doubts.”

The scepticism within sections of the NDA and Vajpayee himself was not due to any unfriendli­ness to big...

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