“The people should feel a clear positive change in the character of the government. Some anti-social elements had tried to malign our reputation soon after we came to power. Such forces should be checked. It is our responsibility to ensure that SP workers maintain discipline. If needed, we should try to convince our party workers that their activities could
adversely affect the image of the government.’ This was Akhilesh Yadav in a letter written to his cabinet colleagues after a month in office.
What is implicit in this excerpt from Akhilesh’s letter does not bode well for Uttar Pradesh, for the Samajwadi Party (SP) and the father-son duo that are at its helm. The letter accepts that SP workers need to be disciplined. It also accepts that the SP cadre is not entirely under the diktats of the Chief Minister which is why he needs to appeal to his Ministers to rein them in. Also, it avers that his cabinet colleagues are doing nothing to curb the lawlessness that seems to be the handiwork of the party’s own members.
Against this dismal backdrop, Akhilesh’s government has been given 100 out of 100 marks in its first 100 days of performance by the SP supremo (and his father), Mulayam Singh. The irony cannot be missed at all. ‘I am very happy with the way things are shaping up and will give a 100 on 100 to the government,’ said Mulayam Singh Yadav.
If the crime statistics of the state are perused, the state has gone from bad to worse since Akhilesh took office. The spurt in crimes against women and murders is phenomenal and the government has only been issuing orders and missives to police officials.
If things continue in this way, all the ambitions of Mulayam Singh to play the kingmaker in the 2014 General Elections will be frustrated. If the recently held Mayoral Elections are any indication of the mood of the people, then the SP might be in big trouble. Instead of pulling the government up for its lapses, Mulayam’s pat on Akhilesh’s back might have come as a shocker for the people in Uttar Pradesh. The Bharatiya Janata Party swept these elections and the lawlessness under the current regime might have helped the party to register such gains. While khilesh was campaigning for the 2012 Assembly Elections, he had tried to allay the fears of the people regarding the ‘goondaism’ that had afflicted SP’s last stint in power in the state. The people gave him a chance but as things are moving right now, he might squander all that he has gained.
While Akhilesh Yadav was campaigning for the 2012 Assembly Elections, he had tried to allay the fears of the people regarding the ‘goondaism’ that had afflicted SP’s last stint in power in the state. The people gave him a chance but as things are moving right now, he might squander all that he has gained. What the SP must keep in mind is that the party, though it came to power, could garner only 29.15 per cent of the total votes.
What the SP must keep in mind is that the party, though it came to power, could garner only 29.15 per cent of the total votes polled in the 2012 Assembly Elections. This means that the party is still far from what can be called a clear mandate. The party could convert this chance into a real mandate in the next Assembly Elections or perhaps in the 2014 General Elections and play a bigger role at the national level but with law and order hitting a nadir, the people will be less likely to tolerate the slip between the party’s promises and its real working style.
Reputed social scientists opine that a party is not able to transcend its core voter constituency although it may try to keep it under control for some time. The dilemma is that a party cannot lose the support of the core and neither can it control it for long. Does it mean that the SP is not able to keep its musclemen in control and that the actions of the latter are threatening to tear apart the veneer of good governance that the party has tried to put up this far? Again, it must be
remembered that the SP has got the opportunity to form a government in the state and it must try to use this chance to expand its social base, and thus come out of the dilemma that the core constituency of voters presents.
Increasing crimes against Dalits, especially Dalit women, does not indicate that the SP is thinking along these lines and is still caught in the dilemma.
Also, Akhilesh might be doing a bigger harm to the larger cause of young politicians. If he gets discredited on the grounds of not being able to rein in elements in his party (which will invariably be relegated to the ‘inexperience’ of a young politician) he would be discrediting the entire band of young politicians waiting eagerly in the conservative folds of elders in their parties.
Rape and Molestation of Women
- Badaun: Two police constables abducted a girl (who was on her way to a holy place and was sleeping at night) and raped her at a nearby police picket.
- Jhansi: Mother of a suspected thief was called to the police station and raped.
- Lucknow: The Station House Officer (SHO) of Mall tried to rape a Dalit woman at his residence.
- Kanpur: While the Chief Minister was in town, goons molested a girl in broad daylight in Babu Purwa area; they beat up two men who tried to intervene.
- Lucknow: In the last 6 months 38 cases of molestation have been registered. Arrests have been made in only 6 cases; the remaining 32 have been covered up.
- Women molested in Talkatora area in the city.
- Drunken miscreants molested another woman in Aliganj area of the capital.
- In Mohanlalganj area miscreants in a car first teased a girl and then abducted her in the presence of police personnel.
- Under the Nigohon Police Station, a married woman committed suicide being fed up by daily eve-teasing as the police did not help even after repeated complaints.