As the latest act in the endless drama between Delhi’s ruling party, the AAP, and the country’s ruling party, the BJP, plays out, the gloves are clearly off. Central investigating agencies have been deployed against AAP Ministers and charges of corruption levelled in the amended liquor excise policy rules.
In an interesting play of Schadenfreude, a lot of liberals would like to see the AAP get some egg on its face because of Arvind Kejriwal’s supposed holier-than-thou attitude and his unabashed moves of exhibitionist Hinduism. But Kejriwal is proving to be quite the politician, and this time too has managed to emerge from the fracas smelling of roses and brandishing a page of The New York Times that extols Manish Sisodia, his deputy.
The noise generated around all this tends to obscure other vital aspects of federalism, including the fact that last year’s amendments to the GNCTD Act made by the Centre are in contravention of the Constitution, that a case is pending before the Supreme Court, and that it has not been taken up yet. This issue of Frontline looks at the political, administrative, and realpolitik angles of this tussle.
But if the AAP is playing the religion card so is Bengal’s Didi, having sanctioned an astonishing Rs.258 crore grant to Durga Puja clubs this year. Meanwhile, an enervated Congress thrashes about for survival, in which saga the most interesting story for me personally is Rahul Gandhi’s decision to strengthen Bal Congress, a children’s wing that he hopes will eventually stand up against the politics of hatred and divisiveness.
Other must-reads in this issue include an interview with Srinivas Kodali on how the government spies on its citizens, and a sharp account of the NDTV hostile takeover bid and what it forebodes. Read on.
- You can read the latest issue here.