During the last few months, several ministers and MPs from the BJP have criticized the PMO for not allowing them to work. Some of them have even resigned from the party after terming PM Modi as a dictator.
Union Minister Sushma Swaraj recently declared that she wouldn’t be contesting Lok Sabha polls in 2019 due to health reasons. As mentioned by former BJP leader Arun Shourie multiple times, all the decisions in the government are taken by bureaucrats. Ministers have become just rubber stamps. The excessive power vested with the PMO bureaucrats in the Modi Government leaves a minimal scope for any minister to perform or take decisions about significant projects. However, in spite of such model of governance, Sushma Swaraj managed to prove herself as one of the most loved, and probably the country’s best performing external affairs minister ever.
Perhaps, it is because of her performance that she found herself in front of the BJP’s troll firing squad on social networking sites several times. In October this year, her spat with the bureaucrats in the PMO came out in open when a highly ranked South Block source planted a story in The Hindu suggesting that the EAM did not consult with the PMO before engaging with Pakistan.
Several ministers and MPs have expressed displeasure regarding the government’s functioning
In July 2015, while speaking during an event in Chandrapur (Maharashtra), Dr. Subramanian Swamy claimed that some people in the central government are not letting Nitin Gadkari work. He also said that the union minister had complained him about the same.
A more significant dispute between the ministers and PMO was witnessed during the OROP protests in August 2015. On the instructions of PMO and MHA, Delhi police assaulted ex-servicemen to evict them from Jantar Mantar. Kiren Rijiju, the MoS, home as well as VK Singh interfered and issued orders to the Delhi police chief to let the protestors continue with their protests. Cops were also asked to apologize. Later, in the same month, Manohar Parrikar surprised everyone when he came out in support of the ex-servicemen. He claimed he had already cleared the file for implementation, but Jaitley was not clearing the same.
Reports and evidence submitted to the honorable Supreme Court in Rafale scam case suggest that even in spite of being the country’s defense minister, Parrikar was kept in the dark about changes being made in the Rafale deal. Some in the political circle also believe that Parrikar decided to return to Goa as the chief minister as he was unhappy with several arrangements.
Some exited while others decided to wait and watch
Some ministers and MPs merely kept on expressing displeasure. However, Bhandara-Gondia (Maharashtra) MP Nana Patole and Thupstan Chhewang, the BJP MP from Ladakh resigned from their seats suggesting they are unhappy with Modi Government’s way of functioning.
When it comes to the most recent criticism against the dictatorial behavior of the PMO, Varun Gandhi’s open admission deserves special attention. During the last month, the Sultanpur Lok Sabha MP made a startling revelation. He claimed that he received a call from the PMO and the official asked him not to raise objections about the increase in MPs salaries. Raising questions and discussing issues is every parliamentarian’s right. Thus, a bureaucrat from the PMO asking a democratically elected MP to keep quiet is indeed dangerous for the democracy. But then, for some BJP supporters, Gandhi happens to be an “outsider,” and there cannot be any complaints against their ‘supreme leader.’
Now, the main question, is senior minister Sushma Swaraj’s decision regarding staying away from LS polls linked with the dictatorial model of governance? The former Delhi Chief Minister had a successful kidney transplant surgery in December 2016. So, her health reason also makes sense.
Smt Sushma Swaraj is the Member of Parliament from Madhya Pradesh and she is smart. She has read the writing on the wall in Madhya Pradesh and announced that she will not contest the 2019 LS election
— P. Chidambaram (@PChidambaram_IN) November 20, 2018
Would the party request her to reconsider her decision? Is she planning a Rajya Sabha entry? Only time would answer all these questions. However, after looking at the overall political scenario, the picture remains blurry.
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