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Homechevron_rightOpinionchevron_rightEditorialchevron_rightCreeping intolerance...

Creeping intolerance in Centre-State ties


Indian Constitution has clearly defined the powers and the administrative boundaries of the Centre and the states.

Even though not like the US, the Constitution has tried to restore the essence of federalism by ensuring autonomy to the states to an extent. Given that there is hardly any country as diverse as India with its endless varieties of cultural patterns, religions, castes and languages, the significance and the necessity of Federalism that was achieved after much contemplation and discourses by the architects of the Constitution for the peaceful co-existence of the different cultures and above all for the healthy survival of democracy would be comprehended. But the ruling coalition’s megalomania is likely to destroy the core of the Constitution. Given that the Centre and the state governments are in the control of different allies or fronts, the Sarkariya Commission was entrusted to reexamine the balance of power between the states and the centre when problems arose. Even though the recommendations submitted by the Commission weren’t implemented totally, they helped to avoid disputes to an extent. But ever since RSS pracharak Modi assumed power, the relations between the Centre and the states have been deteriorating. The CBI on Tuesday raided Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s office without his knowledge and seized lakhs of foreign currency from the residence of his principal Secretary Rajendra Kumar. The incident that led to a political storm causing uproar in the Parliament further worsening the relation between the government and the Opposition is not a trivial matter. Union Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad reacted by saying that there was no law which stated that the Chief Minister should be informed before the raid. Those who are dubious about the fact that the incident was a retaliatory move targeting the Aam Aadmi Party and an attempt to tarnish Kejriwal’s image couldn’t be blamed. The AAP had swept 67 out of the 70 seats in the Delhi Assembly giving a jolt to Modi and his party.

About the same time, Arunachal Pradesh Governor J P Rajkhowa convening an Assembly session without consulting the Chief Minister and his council of members led to another row in the Parliament. The Governor preponed the Assembly to December 16th when it was scheduled to be convened on January 14th by the Chief Minister. That the Sangh Parivar is carrying out their agenda is clearly evident. It was only recently that the Delhi police raided the Kerala House over reports of serving beef in its restaurant. Even before the ruckus died down, a new controversy erupted over the barring of Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy from a function unveiling former Chief Minister and Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) president, R. Sankar’s statue in Kollam. Chandy was asked to keep off the program attended by Prime Minister Modi the last moment by the Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana (SNDP) Yogam general secretary Vellapally Natesan who had invited him earlier to preside over it. Even though Natesan the event’s organizer, took responsibility of excluding the CM from the function, many believe it to be a political drama conspired at the Prime Minister’s office. It’s the intolerance of the PM and his party towards the states with non-BJP governments that is revealed by barring the Chief Minister from a program attended by the Prime Minister. The Centre’s insult, neglect and retaliatory itch towards such states are what become visible beyond the efforts to justify or cover up. Out of several demands submitted only hiking up the import duty on natural rubber has been ensured by the PM. Those who brag about protecting the country’s harmony and integration engaging in such acts would only plunge the nation into chaos.

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