Did anyone notice that Narendra Modi preferred to attend the Pravasi Bharatiya Event in Delhi rather than his own party's national executive meeting in Guwahati? Was it a snub to his political masters or was it just a natural preference for business that drove Modi to Delhi?
Everyone knows that NRIs are wooed in this country for the money they can bring back home. Everyone wants the NRIs to invest in their state. But very few politicians can be open about this. The Gujju on the other hand is focused clearly on business. This is what defines a Gujju. As someone who is a "naturalized Gujju", I feel proud to note the progress that Gujarat has made over the last 2-3 decades. For many years now, Gujarat's growth rate has been upwards of 11% per annum......higher than China's. Anyone who has traveled to Gujarat (and Ahmedabad in particular) will agree that the infrastructure in Gujarat is the best in India. The roads are outstanding. I once covered the Bby-Abad distance at an average speed of 81 km/hr. Very soon, the entire stretch from Bby to Abad will be an expressway. Roads are the lifeline of Gujarat.....and the good connectivity is one of the reasons that people prefer to operate from their own small cities and villages rather than migrate to Abad. This explains why Abad's population is only around 55-60 lacs......way too less for the premier city of an industrial state like Gujarat. The Gujarat government has also shown itself to be smart.....they were not the first ones to experiment with the BRTS (Bus Road Transport System).....but after Pune and Delhi failed miserably, Gujarat learnt the tricks and launched a very successful BRTS in Ahmedabad.
Modi knows that Gujaratis care largely for business. He knows that if he can make sure Gujarat keeps shining as it is right now, he is in a position to repeat in Gujarat what the Left has done in WB (ruled for 3 decades). But look at the difference in approach.....the Left ruled WB by perpetuating poverty (making everyone poor.....thinking that's a good goal to have!), while Modi will rule Gujarat by eradicating poverty and making everyone rich. On Gujarat Day (May 1 every year), the Gujarat government issues ads in the papers comparing Gujarat with Singapore....not with any other state in India! When Gujarat holds the annual Vibrant Gujarat mela, it routinely gets lacs of crores of investment commitments! When the Tatas decided to move their Nano car project to Gujarat, the people loved Modi for this. Modi knows this!
Modi also knows one other thing about Gujjus. Because He knows that because gujjus focus only on business, they suffer from a guilt feeling inside themselves. While doing business, they dont really care if the opposite party is a Muslim or a Hindu. The Kutchhi Bohris are muslims but in Gujarat, they are recognized as astute business people. Whoever has money is a good business partner! Deep inside, many Gujjus suffer a guilt complex arising from this. They fear they have not done enough to fight for the Hindu cause. To push back the Muslim aggression. Somehow their focus on business has made them "lesser Hindus". Gujjus are too mild mannered to get together and take out morchas and fight on the streets. Modi knows this. By following a virulent attack campaign on Muslims, he is exploiting this guilt complex. Gujjus love Modi for doing what they simply cannot do themselves.
It's this combination of focusing on business and taking on the mantle of protecting Hinduism that has made Modi the most lovable CM anywhere in the country. Yes lovable. Gujjus love Modi. In his 3rd term, Modi continues to enjoy the honeymoon that new CMs get only in their first 100 days of the first term. Their love and affection for Modi is so strong that they are willing to condone the several cases of corruption that have come up in Gujarat. Gujjus are rational about corruption. They know it exists. That's no reason to hate a CM! They are also willing to condone the suspected hand of Modi in several high-profile murder cases.....including the one of his own party-man Haren Pandya.
Somehow, if Modi could moderate his angularity about Muslims, and if he could focus on economic growth, there's no stopping him from becoming India's PM. As I have argued in the earlier posts, we Indians are hungry for growth. We want a way out of poverty. We want a good quality of life. Indians would willingly make Modi the PM......but if only he could shun his Muslim bashing.
I am sure Modi realizes that this is a hole that he has dug himself into. If he were to quit the BJP, no other party would touch him. And if he stays in BJP, he wont be able to grow outside Gujarat. Does he have the charisma to start his own party? Is this another reason why he did not attend the BJP's meeting in Guwahati? We'll know the real truth pretty soon!