Poll passions rise

Updated on Feb 03, 2004 09:52 PM IST

With poll time soon, BJP is going into paroxysms with its feel good factor. Apne munh miyan mitthu at full tilt, writes Vijaya Sharma.

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PTI | ByINDIA DIARY | Vijaya Sharma
It's the time for alliances, calculations, colourful and nasty verbal slanging bouts. It's also the time for populist measures in truckloads. Yes, all Indians know what I am talking about. It's the time for some political disco with the poll fever spreading faster than bird flu (pun unintended!) and poll pals coming together and falling apart faster than you can blink.

So we have had a mini-exim policy and the interim railway budget and a mini-budget with sops flowing thick and fast. The exim policy from Arun Jaitley will gladden hearts of all Indian parents who are planning weddings what with indications that prices of gold and silver will fall soon.
The BJP is going into paroxysms with its feel good factor with party members congratulating their own leaders. style at full tilt. So when Finance Minister Jaswant Singh, in a resplendent yellow turban at a public function in Rajasthan, announced a slew of farmer-friendly schemes, mainly funding schemes for farmers, he was labelled   by BJP biggies Sushma Swaraj and Rajnath Singh.

He is is also keen on ushering a second green revolution in agriculture. More wonders, the Finance Minister has said that the RBI's projection of a 7 per cent GDP growth is rather conservative and he expects more. The certainly asks for more and one is tempted to bestow blessings on Singh a la Sushma Swaraj who has equated the "Jas" in Jaswant Singh to or fame for the minister.

It is also the time when the BJP is pondering such weighty matters as TINAs and SITAs. They are not to be mistaken for any romantic dalliances politicians have indulged in. TINA is the "There is no alternative" factor and SITA is "Sonia is the alternative factor".

All is fair in love and war, so BJP has welcomed its prodigal son, Kalyan Singh back into the party, after expelling him in 1999. Maya memsaab in UP is clutching the cards close to her heart at the moment and will reveal her leanings at the sahi samay. Her names for the BJP and Congress: BJP is nagnath  and Congress is saanpnath.

Congress, meanwhile, is having to fend remarks like "is there no other leader with the Congress that it is now clinging on to Priyanka Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi as a and the Congress says that BJP has no other face to project apart from Vajpayee.

Incidentally, in a recently conducted poll, Vajpayee topped the charts as the leader of choice in poll with close to 30 per cent votes, Sonia Gandhi got around 20 per cent. Advani with a measly 2 per cent was pipped by a Mulayam Singh Yadav with who managed to get 3 per cent as choice of prime ministerial candidate.

Coming back to new measures from ministers, why would the foreign minister be left behind? A new foreign service inspector post is being planned to check functioning of Indian missions overseas. Does the Sarwan Singh Deo immigration racket have anything to do with this move?

But then again how good is feel good ask women. Very recently acid was thrown on women travelling in a Mumbai train, the prime minister's grandnephew was thrown out because he tried to prevent eve teasing. The National Commission for Women has asked: "How safe are women travelling in trains?"  Railway Minister Nitish Kumar has not raised rail fares, all very good. But any heed to this vexed issue?

But like they say self-help is the best help, so a company in the capital, Vision Security, has launched a first of its kind security service in India providing security officers for women. These officers can be hired by companies or individuals. The officers are trained in Jujitsu, Tai Chi, Taekwondo and what have you.

Way to go, women!

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