May 30, 2014 By

Recent Polls: Is Far Right Still Right?


Two immensely feared leaders have achieved decisive mandate and people all over the world are watching each step they are going to take to know whether they would be true to the publicized images about them or whether they would transcend them. Narendra Modi, while being celebrated in the west as being a champion of economic growth, was however seen in the very same light that the US authorities who denied him visa had done.

The ambiguity was best expressed by two articles The Economist wrote about him. The article the magazine carried on December 2013 says:  “India’s great strength is its inclusiveness. In the next five months Mr Modi needs to show that his idea of a pure India is no longer a wholly Hindu one. How he does that is his own affair, but an unambiguous public demonstration that he abhors violence and discrimination against Muslims is a bare minimum. Otherwise, this newspaper will not back him.”  Does this mean that the reason why the newspaper will back him in future is his track record of supporting violence! However in its April 5th issue, the paper corrected the error: “We would wish him well, and we would be delighted for him to prove us wrong by governing India in a modern, honest and fair way. But for now he should be judged on his record—which is that of a man who is still associated with sectarian hatred. There is nothing modern, honest or fair about that. India deserves better.”

Whether India deserved him or not, Narendra Modi is the Prime Minister of India. There were attempts from his part on the very day of his swearing in to prove this he stands above the politics of hate he represents. He invited Nawas Sheriff to the function and the two premiers talked on issues that mattered. However, it has to be seen in future whether he will the same man who, due to his Nero-like indifference, autocratic maneuvering and invisible hands in the blood and loss of many, represented the far right of Indian polity.

Al-Sisi: Questions that remain.

Though Modi’s mandate was decisive, his party winning 282 out of 543 seats in the Lok Sabha with a vote share of 31per cent, Abdel Fatah Al Sisi’s bagging of 90% votes in Egypt is still viewed by many with a pinch of salt as about half the electorate in the country did not vote in the election. The Egyptian military commander, who ousted Morsi, the first democratically elected President, beat the labour activist Hamdeen Sabahi. Though there were assurances by Al-Sisi that he would offer a peaceful and prosperous Egypt, many fear that another Mubarak era would return in the history of the country. This is because he not only managed a coup of the country; he brutally and cold-bloodedly suppressed the opposition against him. Morsi is still behind the bars. About 682 Brotherhood supporters, including the supreme commander Mohamed Badie, were recommended death sentences. The clampdown against Brotherhood and the Left-leaning political movements are still going on.  Though this is not the first time that someone is elected to power in the context of an undeclared emergency, Al-Sisi’s will be an autocratic government democratically elected, if we borrow the expression used by Arundathi Roy to describe Narendra Modi’s election.

The victory of France’s far-right National Front in European Union elections has made way easier for its leader Marine Le Pen to be their next president.  Her election too is viewed by some observers as showing the clout and reputation that right wing has in Europe. Everyone is looking forward to the minorities and dissident voices in these societies that are renowned globally for multi—culturalism, pluralism and accommodation of differences.




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