Ruminations on the Deteriorating Condition of Tamil Nadu Politics
Two or more group of looters joined in to rob a wealthy house. The thieving groups started fighting with each other and kindly asked the people of the house to keep quiet, since this only a problem to be solved between them. The current state of Tamil Nadu politics can be explained along these lines. Two puppets held on string by the most powerful people are swayed to win the battle for CM in Tamil Nadu. But what do the people of TN think? Who cares? The politicians have come to a conclusion that people have nothing to do with high-stakes political games. Instead of kicking big money out of politics, the politicians as usual have used big money to kick the people out of political arena.
How this was made possible? Part of the blame rests on general public. They gave the chance for corrupted creatures to simulate easy formulas to gain power. While one part of the public matched the word politics only with party-based politics, the other part of public became followers of corrupted leaders’ alleged charisma. The words like charisma, appeal or allure have always been words of curse for Tamil Nadu politics, ever since the rise of Dravidian politics. Those with twisted sense of charisma actually pushed back the true political ideologies to only portray a false heroic image. Often in political arena, Tamil people’s emotions are played at. The media provides theater stage to unfurl the high drama. The sudden heroic rise of Mr. O. Panneer Selvam after the recent Marina interview is one such well calculated drama to play with people’s emotions.
Alas, the general public is cheated so often that they are reluctant to trust the devious creature called ‘politician’. Mr. OPS’ overnight actions may be fodder for some heroic memes, but he isn’t definitely trustworthy to become the next great TN political leader. The political vacuum in Tamil Nadu is deepening day by day that it is teetering towards volatile state. The ‘powers that be’ from Centre will play their games until one of the Dravidian political parties is beheaded. Sasikala bringing in some more of her family members into ADMK and Mr. OPS joining hands with Deepa (Jaya’s niece) is a signal that ADMK is rapidly approaching its demise.
Even if the party survives it will no longer be autonomous (like it was under Jayalalitha); a hidden persona will always be in the driver seat. DMK, the other biggest political party in TN, can’t do anything but wait for the near death of its old rival. MK Stalin might have fully understood how Jayalalitha’s demise would lead to BJP’s subtle moves to gain a stronghold in Tamil Nadu. For now, DMK will only wait for the elections and pray that people vote for them. Even if that happens in the near-future, Stalin would have play a whole different political game than the one played by Mr. M.Karunanidhi. The question is does he have the slyness and grit of his father/leader.
Is the tradition of hero worship had led Tamil Nadu to this sorrier state? May be. But that’s not the only thing that has led to this as much as the rest of Indian media like to think so. More than hero worship, the depoliticization of youngsters has been the primary reason. Then, the politicians of former CM Karunanidhi’s period came up with something called ‘Thirumangalam formula’ to simplify the ways to win elections. In the 2009 by-elections in Thirumangalam constituency (in Madurai), then ruling party DMK brought in heaps of money to woo voters. It was a very worst case of politicians successfully corrupting large members of public. Later, even people shamelessly started demanding more cash for selling their vote. The moral corruption was further carried on by AIADMK. Dravidian party politicians love ‘Thirumangalam formula’, because there is no need to use muscle power or other painful devious methodologies. They could just use part of what they have looted to make the whole public to be their partners in crime. Of course, let’s not forget the caste that plays a huge part in selecting the candidates for a constituency. Contrary to what many of the so-called educated city dwellers believe, caste is a decisive factor in the elections across India. Tamil Nadu definitely isn’t an exception. Caste plus money have recently yielded good results in the elections for the concerned parties.
The simplified formula may have provoked Sasikala to desire for the power. Yet, there are other hidden, complex forces to silent thwart the plans. The primary one is the media, which can make (Panneer Selvam, Deepa) as well as break (Sasikala) certain persons. If you really think Mr. Panneer Selvam snapped out of a trance state and took a brave decision to fight against Sasikala, then I can only feel sorry for you. Paneer Selvam has only used melodrama to masquerade the hard-nosed political ploys done behind the screen. His team has its share of political culprits and idiots. People may rejoice how justice has been reinstated in the DA (disproportionate assets) case involving Sasikala and late Jayalalitha. But it would be far-fetched to claim that people could now totally believe in justice system. Of course, the Supreme Court judges have given a great judgement on this particular DA case. But, let’s not forget how justice will be done only when ‘powers that be’ want it to happen.
Sasikala’s long march to jail is a result of her poorly playing the game of thrones. BJP and RSS seem to have won the earlier rounds of this game. And, finally please feel sorry for those asking what Mr. Modi has to do with the silly things happening in Tamil Nadu.