Saturday, November 8, 2014

Communal Chief Ministers

As the Goa CM, Manohar Parikkar, quits in order to join the Union Cabinet, an internecine fight has broken out in the Goa BJP over who is to succeed him. While the deputy chief minister is Francis D' Souza it is, however, fairly certain that Laxmikant Parsekar is to be the new chief minister.

Unsurprisingly, allegations of communalism are being floated about. Support for CMs also seem to be arranged along religious lines. This Economic Times report for example say that "D'Souza has the support of at least five catholic MLAs in BJP who would join with him if he rebels"[emphasis mine]

This situation is remarkably similar to an incident as described by Abul Kalam Azad in his biography, India Wins Freedom. The incidents pertains to the Congress choosing its CMs along communal lines after the 1937 provincial elections in Bombay state. This is an excerpt describing the Bombay incident:
One incident happened at the time which left a bad impression about the attitude of the Provincial Congress Committees. The Congress had grown as a national organization and given the opportunity of leadership to men of different communities. In Bombay, Mr Nariman was the acknowledged leader of the local Congress. When the question of forming the provincial Government arose, -there was general expectation that Mr Nariman would be asked to lead i t in view of his status and record. This was not however done. Sardar Patel and his colleagues did not like Nariman and the result was that Mr B. G. Kher became the first Chief Minister of Bombay. Since Nariman was a Parsee and Kher a Hindu, this led . to wide speculation that Nariman had been by-passed on communal grounds. Even if it is not true, it is difficult to disprove such an allegation.
As a result of his allegations, Nariman was expelled from the Congress party. However, as maybe a small consolation, Nariman Point--Bombay city's poshest piece of real estate--was name after him.

No comments:

Post a Comment