India’s top political journalist is the victim of a vicious campaign

By Rajendra Yadav By | 01/03/2016 12:04:58 India’s biggest political commentator, Rajendra “Pani” Yadav, has been attacked for criticising Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Sarkar’ campaign, in which the BJP has been targeting the ruling Congress party.

In an opinion piece for the Hindu newspaper on Thursday, Yadav said Modi’s election manifesto in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections was a betrayal of the country’s democracy.

In his article, Yadava questioned Modi’s “sarkar” campaign, which was designed to mobilise voters from the economically backward and rural sections of the nation.

“Modi has decided to use his parliamentary majority to implement his economic policies in a way that will bring about the most progressive economic policies of any country in the world,” he wrote.

“It is ironic that, when the people are voting for a prime minister, he is seeking to exploit the electoral mandate of the majority in the country, the very people who voted for him.”

“The prime minister is making an effort to appeal to the voters who are economically backward to vote for him, to the people who are poor and are still struggling to make ends meet,” Yadav added.

In a separate article for the same paper, Yadavan alleged that the BJP government was targeting its opponents, who he said had been the victims of a “campaign of terror” led by a “sordid cabal”.

The party’s ruling party, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), said Yadav’s article “furthers the fight against terrorism in the state of Gujarat, a state where there is no democracy and a police state”.

“Pani is an outspoken critic of Modi’s decision to use the ‘Saurashtra’ slogan, which is not only a slur but also a betrayal by the Congress government,” said the BJP.

“The state of Modi, and not the BJP, should be the centre of the investigation of the ‘sarkars’.”

In his column for the Times of India, Yadawas view of the BJP and its election strategy was equally scathing.

“The BJP is trying to paint Narendra Modi as a leader of the oppressed.

In truth, the prime minister of India is a man who is exploiting the people to achieve his political goals, as the BJP is now doing in the Uttar Pradesh elections,” Yadaw as wrote.

The Hindu quoted Yadav as saying he had received death threats for criticiseing the BJP’s economic policies.

“If anyone has received threats for opposing Modi’s economic policy, I am afraid I have been a victim of it,” he said.

“As a journalist, I have to put my career before my journalistic ethics.

This article will be seen by people across India and across the world as a warning to the rest of the world not to follow the BJP in the direction of the sarkars,” he added.

Yadav is an award-winning political commentator who has published columns for the Hindustan Times, the Hindu and the Sangh.