Swamy – Modi’s troubleshooter in chief?

Internal or external, when solving delicate issues, he is Modi's go-to man

Is Swamy Modi's troubleshooter in chief?
Swamy - Modi's friend in need?

A construct of a relationship between Swamy and Modi that may or may not exist

[dropcap color=”#008040″ boxed=”yes” boxed_radius=”8px” class=”” id=””]F[/dropcap]rom leading the Strategic cell in Lok Sabha Polls to Nepal, Dr. Subramanian Swamy has been doing a lot of work in the background, helping the cause of the party he merged his Janata Party into, on August 11, 2013. It was expected that since he had worked so hard to expose the 2G scam and establish the corruption that had become endemic in the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) – 2 regime, he would be given a Lok Sabha ticket for the 2014 polls.

When the first list of candidates was announced, there was a glaring omission – Dr. Swamy’s name. Anyone who had just merged his party into the BJP and not being rewarded even a single seat for members of his party would have been peeved, perhaps even forced to rethink the merger. But Swamy did not. He had bigger goals in mind.

  1. Swamy appointed chairperson of Strategic Action Committee for 2014 Lok Sabha Elections – Elections now stretch over months, and with Social Media trying to interpret every twitch on the politician’s nose, this cell was trusted with the responsibility to tackle day-to-day issues strategically to ensure that the overall goal of getting absolute majority was secured. In this Aaj Tak interview in 2013, Swamy had predicted that the NDA would get 340 Lok Sabha seats, perhaps drawing ridicule from his opponents. The final count was 334, one of the most accurate forecasts.

  2. Omitted from the Cabinet – Indications that he might be handed the most crucial Finance Ministry were dashed when his name did not figure in the list. Rudyard Kipling had observed in his short story Thrown away about his experiences in India and how incompetents hang on longer in India than anywhere else. Why such a stinging rebuke you ask? Because Dr. Swamy simply is the most qualified person to run the Ministry of Finance, which he did not get due to some machinations. When asked about it, he laughed it off saying that if it is in his ‘prarabdha’ he will get it. Was he being ear marked for more difficult assignments?

  3. Breaking the impasse in Maharashtra – Fast forward to October 2014, when Maharashtra went to polls, the BJP alliance fell tantalizingly short of an absolute majority by securing only 122 seats out of the total of 288. Seat adjustment talks with its partner the Shiv Sena had failed and therefore the election became a four-cornered contest between the BJP, Shiv Sena, Congress and Nationalist Congress Party. Shiv Sena had done impressively, getting 62 seats on its own but was overshadowed by its junior partner the BJP which got 122. The NCP, which got 41 seats, bowled a googly by promising un-conditional support to the BJP (even though they did not ask for it). Shiv Sena, while being a member of NDA, was hardening its stance and BJP was unwilling to yield, thus leading to a standoff. Eventually the BJP was invited to form the government and prove its majority on the floor of the assembly. Shiv Sena was still sulking and a way had to be found to get BJP and Shiv Sena to see eye to eye. On November 29th, Swamy met with Uddhav Thackeray in Mumbai and convinced him of the benefits of continuing his relationship with the NDA and Sena acquiesced, eventually.

  4. Assuring Nepal of India’s good intentions – A lot of bad blood was shed in the controversy created out of Nepal’s Constitution with allegations that India was tacitly supporting a section of Nepali populace. Like a Bollywood story the feuding families are united at the end (except in this case two Hindu-majority nations were involved). Imagine everyone’s surprise when Dr. Swamy pays a visit to Khatmandu on the eve of the Nepali Prime Minister’s visit to New Delhi, to set the groundwork and allay any fears that the younger sibling may have!

Anytime a leader has requested him, Swamy has obliged by going far and above the call of duty to execute the task, without bothering for a reward. To him, the cause is more important, if it is for the greater good.

This article has been written based on information available in the media. Views are personal.

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