Saturday, March 19, 2005

A slap in Modi's face

Do check out this Hindu editorial:

    Not too long ago, Mr. Modi had exulted about the similarities between President George W. Bush's election speeches and his own communal vitriol in 2002. He even challenged political pundits to analyse the spiritual consanguinity between Mr. Bush and himself. Now that the U.S. Government has formally given international recognition to Mr. Modi's responsibility in the post-Godhra genocide, he must be puzzled as to why and how these assumed similarities could have been given such short and ignominious shrift.

    The United States has effectively barred Mr. Modi from entering its territories and declared him persona non grata. This significant decision owes a lot to the active protests by human rights activists across America.

    Predictably, Chief Minister Modi has reacted to the denial of U.S. visa by calling it an "insult to India and the Constitution". This is precious coming from a man who not only violated every single norm enshrined in the Indian Constitution, but was also asked by the pre-eminent leader of his party, Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, to follow his rajdharma. Mr. Modi has now resorted to the rhetoric of being popularly elected as well as the spurious legalism of the absence of indictment of the Gujarat Government or the Chief Minister in the "incidents" — Mr. Modi's euphemism for the pogrom conducted against the minorities — that happened after the Godhra massacre. Dissidents within the BJP in Gujarat have been active in recent weeks demanding his scalp. With this additional setback over his U.S. visa, the Gujarat Chief Minister could be in for a long, hard summer.

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