As a proverb goes in the hinterlands of UP , “A smart crow bites its own dung”. History is replete with such examples and who can be better than Indira Gandhi who fell a victim to her own smartness. She created a monster which finally engulfed her life. Bhindranwale was her tool to get Congress in power in Punjab but in the end got snowballed into a catastrophe that ended with operation Blue Star.
Well the talent of Indira Gandhi was not just restricted to the imposition of emergency only. This write up goes a beyond the emergency of 1975 and looks into her greater sins.
Indira Gandhi emerged from the title of “Mom ki gudiya” to break the grip of the K.Kamraj led ‘syndicate’ on the Congress. Thanks to the untimely demise of Lal Bahadur Shastri, fortunes turned in her favour.
Well, this coming out of no where type of start seems to have given Indira Gandhi a false notion of “timing” the events,to maximise her political mileage . The sense that every one praises the surgeries done by an oncologist on a tumor while no one appreciates a doctor who treats the same tumor early when it was a simple acne. (A MS Dhoni type finish)
Indira was as listless as her father and her son carried the legacy to even further.
During her tenure, the Marxist historians did an irreparable damage to the Indian education by chalking out the NCERT guidelines of 1982 which are fully dubious, Bangladeshi infiltrators got an official backing from the 7 RCR, private enterprise got stifled for ever to an extent that it has not coped up till today, the insecurity of the gullible was cashed upon with the slogans of Gareebi Hatao and 20 point programme.
From pruning the wings of cabinet secretariat to starting the menace of robing in paid crowd for the speeches of Indira, P.N.Haksar (the Principal Secretary in PMO) helped her.
The flow of power stemmed from herself to her family then to the party and finally to the government.She always believed that truth was momentary and can be managed by counter blaming her opponents. (Something her grandson seems to be doing by projecting NaMo as responsible for everything wrong to have happened since 1947). Ridiculously, she held Janta Govt. as responsible for forced sterilisations in her electoral campaigns in 1980.
Indira perpetuated the problems of our economy. The only good thing she supposedly did was the nationalisation of the banks which too came with a catch. Indian government was rather forced to carry out the nationalisation so as to use the private savings. This was the action of last resort, because the government coffers were virtually empty.(Acne-tumor syndrome again at work!) With the nationalisation, the banking sector got caught in the perpetual web of trade and labour unions which strike every 2-3 months. It stopped the connection of trade houses and the banks forever. The banks in the public sector have survived by disinvestment and regular recapitalization by government only.
She further nationalized insurance and coal mines to give birth to unholy plunder by bureaucracy of the coal and crippling our power sector forever.Next on the list is reservation of certain items of manufacturing for the SSI. This shunted out the medium and big industrial manufacturing for ever. This was done in an era when the so called East Asian tiger economies carried out the great asian miracle in a manufacturing led economic model. Unemployment rates never came below 9% ever since. Organised manufacturing if just 5%, skilled labour force is just 3%.
Finally was the amendment in the Industrial disputes Act 1948 which checked retrenchment, exit options and other adjustments by the manufacturers. The government instead asked the banks to convert the loans into equity rather than letting the companies exit. This projected the image of India as a full of hassles manufacturing destination to an extent that labour Intensive manufacturing is migrating to Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand and even Bangladesh. This negated the comparative advantage India had in labour intensive manufacturing.
Such policies stunted our growth. Something, which Modi govt. Is trying to change 31 years after her death. By opting for changes in the labour laws, Modi govt. tried to strike at the roots of the problem.
The scum is deep rooted and will certainly take time for cleansing. 31 years of inaction need to be cleared but to expect it to get cleared in 31 days or even 31 months is mere day dreaming.