Satyam Eva Jayate
(The Truth is ever victorious).
It suits India’s elite opinion-makers always to characterize the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) as India’s “principal opposition party.”
Principal opposition, presumably, to “the natural party of governance,” namely, the Indian National Congress.
The years have shown that such characterization on fact is patently erroneous, especially over the last two decades of Independent India’s existence. Be it market fundamentalism, or militarism directed at “terrorists” and “naxals” or love of American imperialism there is little daylight between the Congress and the BJP.
Even on that “basic” postulate of the Constitution of India, “secularism,” one has always known that substantial sections among the Congress party covertly share the majoritarian impulses of the BJP, even as the party as a whole swears by the principle of secularism as an article of faith and a feature of its long history. Which is not to deny that other sections within the Congress continue to remain laudably wedded to Nehru’s vision of a welfare state of which secular citizenship was envisaged as a founding bedrock. Without question, this section within the Congress has the great good luck of having Sonia Gandhi as a bearer of that legacy.