Sanjiv Bhatt is a police official who has contended that the Gujarat Chief Minister was complicit in the 2002 communal riots. By making the allegations he had taken the battle to the chief minister, s
omething that resulted in him being sent to jail and facing other punitive action. By fielding his wife against the Chief Minister, the allegations he made stand diluted. Not only is he is weakening his case against the Chief Minister, Bhatt also stands to lose the moral ground he may have held. It is a pity that the Congress has chosen to play politics in a case where it was the last thing needed.
With this development the Congress not only loses the moral battle, but also the war against the Gujarat Chief Minister. Unless of course, they knew they were already out of contention and decided to go down with one final shot.
Not only is it a good idea, it’s a great idea. The chances that any Congress candidate will be able to challenge, let alone defeat, Modi on his home turf are miniscule. In effect, if the Congress na
mes a ‘strong’ candidate, that candidate is wasted. He/she may garner lakhs of votes, but will still lose. My naming Mrs. Bhatt as the Congress candidate, there are many gains. 1. She will keep the issue of Godhra and the riots alive through her campaigning – and all references to the riots, when made by her, will seem ‘natural’. 2. There is no downside to her losing. After all, she is an amateur, not a professional politician. 3. Considering she is a woman, Modi will be forced to be temperate in his campaign against her.
Any career politician, when pitted against Modi, would have lost facilely. Mrs. Bhatt will polarize all anti-Modi, especially Muslim, votes. Win or lose, she will look like a hero, as the person who had the courage to stand against Modi. For the Congress, the reflected glory and the ability to keep the 2002 riots in election conversations and in media during the run up to the polls by using her as a front and a mouthpiece is a big plus .