The spectacular international Rajyog of Narendra Modi
There is a concept in India called Rajyog, a period in which a king will reign and flourish, while all his enemies will perish. Those who ally with him will prosper and those oppose him will bite the dust.
Narendra Modi saw a spectacular rise from 2012–14 during which he won almost every State Assembly election he campaigned for and he made Prime Minister of India by reducing a party which had ruled much of India to a record low and abysmal 44/543 seats (8%) in Parliament while he led his Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to 282 seats in the May 2014 general elections.
All his regional rivals perished one by one but when he looked at the international stage, the same thing started happening there too. Probably his biggest regional rival when he took over was Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa.
India first backed the dreaded LTTE (Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam) and then fought them with disastrous results, losing a war and then former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi.
Rajapaksa beat the LTTE and then warmed up to China, much to the chagrin of India who looked on helplessly. When Modi took over, Rajapaksa was at his peak and looked good to win in 2015 and rule till 2020.
And then in January 2015, out of the blue, Rajapaksa lost. Absolutely nobody saw that coming. Rajapaksa tried to be Prime Minister the same year, but lost that too. The new Sri Lanka leadership is much more amenable to working with Modi and is not openly baiting Modi the way Rajapaksa was.
India was a rare non-Muslim country which opposed the creation of Israel in the United Nations and did nothing to mend ties with that country till 1991. Till 2014 the ties between the two countries got better and better but they didn’t create much fuss.
Then it all came out of the closet after Modi took over and he and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu formed a mutual admiration society and started praising each other and promising everyone their ties would be taken to the next level.
A few months after Rajapaksa was defeated, Netanyahu went to the polls and the consensus was that he would be defeated. In a surprise verdict he wasn’t. Against all odds, he emerged triumphant and now he and Modi are seriously cementing ties between India and Israel.
A few months after Netanyahu’s victory, there were elections in the United Kingdom. David Miliband is a good friend of Modi’s rival and Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi.
When David visited Rahul, the two spent the night in a Dalit’s hut in an Uttar Pradesh village. Rahul also posted photos of the two on social media when they met in Aspen.
Prime Minister David Cameron on the other hand seemed more aligned with Modi. #AbKiBaarModiSarkaar (This time a Modi government) was a catchy slogan of the 2014 polls.
When Cameron met an Indian journalist, he said #AbKiBaarCameronSarkaar! In the UK elections Cameron was either supposed to lose or a hung Parliament was to favour Labour led by David’s brother Ed Miliband.
In a shocker, Cameron thrashed Miliband 330–232 as the former did well even in Labour bastions and the latter was forced to retire. Another friend of Modi had won a surprising victory. Another Modi catchy slogan was #AccheDin (Good days).
When Cameron stood with Modi in Wembley Stadium, he declared, “Acche din zaroor aayenge” (Good days will definitely come)
Now let’s come to the US Presidential elections. Democratic hopeful Hillary Clinton could be classified as a Modi hater. As Secretary of State, she ensured that US President Barack Obama was lukewarm to India.
Hillary has been a known Modi baiter and if she became US President, their ties would be quite rocky. While Republican presumptive nominee Donald Trump has made a few digs about outsourcing, he has by and large been appreciative of the India story under Modi.
Modi and Trump have many things in common. Both are from the Right, have been attacked by the media, liberals and intellectuals. Both have a keen business sense and are straight talkers.
There is no doubt that Modi would rather do business with Trump rather than Hillary. And guess what? Before the campaign began in 2015, most analysts said that Trump would not even make it to the Top 5 in the Republican race and Hillary would clinch her nomination in no time.
Well Trump officially secured his nomination before Hillary and the former is looking at sordid FBI probes.
Most world leaders have already warmed up to Modi. Obama is a fan and actually installed a hotline with India. At a meet he ran up to Modi, got hold of his hands and declared, “You’re the man!”
The two got together and revived the almost dead Indo-US nuclear deal. Modi surprised everyone by inviting Obama to be chief guest at India’s Republic Day parade. Obama surprised everyone by accepting the decision almost immediately.
While Saudi Arabia and Pakistan have had good ties for decades, no Pakistani head of State got the highest civilian honour, but it was bestowed on Modi. With that he joined an elite group of international leaders who had won that award.
Modi then got Afghanistan’s top civilian honour too. And to think he was dismissed as anti-Muslim once upon a time! When Russian President Vladimir Putin was facing problems with Turkey, he asked Modi whether he could pick up Turkey’s business in case of a crisis.
Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe follows about a dozen people on Twitter. The third person he followed was Modi. It is difficult to believe that Modi was an unknown quantity on the world stage till 2014.
In a Rajyog your friends do well and your rivals don’t. In the 2014 elections the previous Congress low was 114 seats in 1999 but with 44 in 2014 they couldn’t even officially claim the Leader of the Opposition status in the Lok Sabha.
The next largest party was the ADMK and its leader Jayalalithaa is facing a disproportionate assets case in the Supreme Court. After that comes the TMC and its leader Mamata Baneerjee too is under a cloud in the Saradha scam case.
Modi is supreme in India and has no rival. On the world stage he stands tall too.
It is only the Indian mainstream media which is trying to create a fake narrative that he is on shaky ground and faces tests every day and they are coming out with fake campaigns like the one related to intolerance.
Meanwhile, the spectacular Rajyog of Modi marches on!