44 years ago, on this very day, Indira Gandhi initiated a chain of events which, to this day, would mark the most egregious assault on Indian democracy. It was on the 25th of June, 1975 that the former Prime Minister of India declared the Emergency during which numerous human rights violations were committed and persecution of political opponents became state policy.
However, people have short memories and 44 years is a long time. Thus, we have Mamata Banerjee claim today that India suffered a ‘Super Emergency’ during the first tenure of the NDA government. “We must learn our lessons from history and fight to safeguard the democratic institutions in the country,” she says.
Today is the anniversary of the #Emergency declared in 1975. For the last five years, the country went through a ‘Super Emergency’. We must learn our lessons from history and fight to safeguard the democratic institutions in the country
— Mamata Banerjee (@MamataOfficial) June 25, 2019
The allegations Mamata is making against Narendra Modi appears to be a classic case of projection. While she kept the attention of the media focused on Narendra Modi by levelling unrealistic charges against him, she has ruled West Bengal with an iron hand without tolerating any dissent.
All the accusations that Mamata makes against the Prime Minister are actually charges she is guilty of herself. Under her reign of terror, communal polarization was at its worst and Hindus suffered greatly as a consequence. The Police were mute spectators when Muslim mobs went on a rampage and destroyed Hindu property and attacked them physically at Kaliachowk and Dhulagarh. The Police were again mute spectators when, a couple of years later, Mamata’s vote-bank struck again but this time at the NRS Medical College and Hospital.
Under Mamata’s leadership, law and order and freedom of expression have become entirely nonexistent. People are getting murdered for chanting ‘Jai Shri Ram’, movies critical of Mamata are banned and there is a genuine climate of fear pervading the state where people are scared to voice their political opinion.
Persecution of political opponents has been the policy of the state government, the Police functions as an extended arm of Trinamool Congress itself. Various scams have been committed by luminaries of the party and Mamata Banerjee recently appeared to admit that her party workers and elected representatives were taking bribes from beneficiaries to implement the state’s welfare schemes.
All the crimes committed by Mamata Banerjee, it appears, is finally coming home to roost. Her crackdown on ‘Jai Shri Ram’ has only led to it becoming the battle cry in the state, the doctors were up in protest and teachers still are, people are lining up in front of the houses of her party members to demand the return of the bribe money they paid, the further deteriorating law and order situation continues to claim lives.
And all the while, Mamata Banerjee refuses to relent and restore some semblance of sanity. “Nero fiddled while Rome burned,” so goes the saying. But Mamata Banerjee is not Nero, she is not fiddling while Bengal burns. She is actively feeding fuel to the fire in the hope that it will burn her enemies and she will be reborn as the Dragon. But she is not a Targaryen either.
When Mamata Banerjee ousted the Communists from power, there were great expectations from her. Instead, she perpetuated the same policies and took control of the state machinery using the tactics of her predecessors. However, she took it a step further. People learnt the hard way that she was no different, she was just more of the same. Worse, she amplified the worst instincts of the communist regime by manifolds.
And as time progressed, her rule progressively deteriorated. And now, dictatorial tendencies dominate Mamata’s personality and her party actively subverts democratic elections themselves to maintain their stranglehold on power. The ‘Super Emergency’ that Mamata speaks of, the entire country hasn’t suffered it. Only one has, and it’s her own state, West Bengal.