BJP is Using Citizenship Act Amendment to Spread Hindutva in Assam
Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal (centre) with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah. Credit:
In view of the approaching UP assembly elections, the BJP and its Hindutva associates are not only busily consolidating their usual vote banks but are also using new tactics to expand into territory that has so far remained outside of their dominance.
These are not sudden flashes in the pan, but campaigns that have been preceded by years, even decades, of patient preparation and planning.
The BJP-led government in Assam, which came to power riding the crest of a massive wave of heady propaganda claiming deliverance of “jati, mati and bheti” (nationality, land and hearth) from the clutches of alleged foreign hordes, has already witnessed an equally steep decline in its popularity.
Leaders like Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who had promised a huge inflow of funds to accelerate the stagnant economy of the state ahead of the polls, have not shown any inclination to depart from the neoliberal rulebook in providing finance.
The central government is thus committed to financial discipline and the state is expected to earn its own funds for development, which of course is more likely to doom it to perpetual backwardness.
The people are unlikely to understand or accept such compulsions, and there is an urgent need to divert public attention from the fund-crunch and its consequences as well as repair the damage to its popular support base. The BJP’s all-India leadership has devised a two-pronged strategy to fulfil both ends.