Former BJP leader, Yashwant Sinha, became the latest person to show interest in becoming the Prime Ministerial candidate of the proposed Mahagathbandhan. He was speaking at a session organised as part of Shri Ram College’s Economic Summit at the Delhi University.
Sinha said that the biggest problem in the country was the non-creation of jobs. He said that India needs a leader who can improve the conditions for agriculture in the country, make it profitable, and set up irrigation projects, industries and townships.
“We have to do a lot of work in this country… We will have to find somebody who is prepared to buy this theory and start doing it,” he stated. When prodded about who the person could be, he answered, “There is nobody in my mind.” And then, when he was asked who was the closest, he replied, “The closest is me, myself, what I am,” leading to laughter in the audience.
“I am very close behind him,” CPI(M) leader Sitaram Yechury was quick to reply when asked if he would endorse Sinha.
The problem with the Mahagathbandhan has always been the presence of too many leaders with great personal ambition. It is widely speculated that the Chief Minister of West Bengal, Mamata Banerjee, has Prime Ministerial ambitions. Then there is Mayawati who is often touted as next Prime Minister should the Mahagathbandhan manage to pull off a victory in 2019. And of course, the scion of the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty Rahul Gandhi has also made his willingness for the top job clear. But apart from the DMK, no one believes Rahul is the right man for the post.
Under such circumstances, there is likely to be great friction within the alliance even if they do manage to secure a victory. There is a certain possibility that a neutral candidate who is acceptable to all parties is nominated for Prime Minister and his hands would be tied by the same people who awarded him the post. It is probably keeping such a scenario in mind that Sinha made himself available for the post, although it may have been appropriately cloaked in the garb of humour.