WEST BENGAL IN CONSTITUTIONAL CRISIS?
CONSTITUTIONAL CRISIS IN WEST BENGAL?/ LEGAL LOCK
WHAT IS CONSTITUTIONAL CRISIS?
In political science, a constitutional crisis is a problem or conflict in the function of a government that the political constitution or other fundamental governing law is perceived to be unable to resolve. There are several variations to this definition. For instance, one describes it as the crisis that arises out of the failure, or at least a strong risk of failure, of a constitution to perform its central functions.
The crisis may arise from a variety of possible causes. For example, a government may want to pass a law contrary to its constitution; the constitution may fail to provide a clear answer for a specific situation; the constitution may be clear but it may be politically infeasible to follow it; the government institutions themselves may falter or fail to live up to what the law prescribes them to be; or officials in the government may justify avoiding dealing with a serious problem based on narrow interpretations of the law.
That’s one of the biggest problems with the concept of a “constitutional crisis”: It’s poorly defined. There’s no set of agreed-upon conditions, no ultimate standard that indicates when a country has officially entered into a constitutional crisis. Instead, we can only look at a country’s political system and ask whether it’s working as designed, or whether the structures and institutions that hold it together are intact.
Politically, a constitutional crisis can lead to administrative paralysis and eventual collapse of the government, the loss of political legitimacy, or to civil war. A constitutional crisis is distinct from a rebellion, which occurs when political factions outside a government challenge the government’s sovereignty, as in a coup d’état or a revolution led by the military or by civilians.
POST POLL VIOLENCE : WEST BENGAL
A political party came second and another political party came first in an election in an Indian state. Nothing new or newsworthy here. Of course, elections keep happening in our vibrant democracy.
Ever since the BJP lost the election in that state of west bengal, news reports of violence being erupted there are being flashed.
In the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, the BJP had got 18 seats in West Bengal. Following that, violence erupted and TMC workers were attacked. Violence has also broken out in Delhi after the BJP lost the assembly elections there.
Coronavirus has been claiming so many lives in the country. So why play politics of riots and defame the country. Kerala is also known for political violence but things seem to be peaceful there. Assam is seeing nothing untoward despite a high-octane election campaign. Tamil Nadu and Puducherry are peaceful.
IT IS JUST WEST BENGAL!
But it is only in TMC-ruled west Bengal that homes are being burnt, BJP workers are being lynched and mobs are taking over the streets.
The unleashing of violence to target political opponents that acquired a new level of viciousness during the 2018 panchayat polls continues. There were “intellectuals” waxing eloquent about the “victory of federalism” and “victory of the idea of India” when the eventual results of the Bengal elections were announced. It has now been made clear to us what it means for the country.
It cannot be articulated more clearly that “federalism” and “idea of India” mean that mobs will prowl around the houses of people who associate themselves with the BJP, a legitimate political party that has won the votes of crores of people. Lofty jargon is just intellectual cover for violence on the streets by which the liberal elite of the country seeks to tighten its loosening grip over the electorate.
If bullying the electorate is the “idea of India”, then it is an existential danger for our democracy. If this is what the TMC resorts to after winning, imagine the kind of chaos Mamata Banerjee would have unleashed if she had lost. She would have surely put Donald Trump and his supporters who swamped Capitol Hill to shame.
While the party that came second is showing grace, the party that is forming the government is baring its fangs on the streets. Mamata Banerjee was issuing veiled threats of “looking after” her opponents after the elections and her lumpen cadre are following up on them now.
MEDIA,GOVERNER & COURT
From the media to the Governor of the state, everyone is appalled at what is happening in Bengal but other political parties are silent.
In another development, the Calcutta High Court directed the State government to file an affidavit on the post-poll violence. The court was hearing a public interest litigation in connection with the violence. The court directed State Advocate General Kishore Dutta to specify in the affidavit the names of areas where violence had broken out, and the steps taken to prevent or control it.
There were reports of shops and commercial establishments of BJP supporters being vandalised in Durgapur in Paschim Bardhhaman district. The BJP MP from Hooghly, Locket Chatterjee, also faced protests when she visited Dhanekhali.
For the first time in the history of Bengal, 19 journalists mostly from television media were assaulted on a single day and in a single municipal corporation Bidhannagar — as Salt Lake is called with its enhanced jurisdiction of Rajarhat.
At such times, one only has to derive strength from the courage of the common BJP worker who went out to the streets to work for her convictions, despite suspecting that such violence would be unleashed at her for simply performing her role in democracy.
It is to protect the same workers that something needs to be done. TMC cadre and the leaders who egg them on must be given a stern message by any means possible. Because there are lives at stake.
West Bengal cannot be allowed to be run like a tinpot dictatorship where any political activism that the “Supreme Leader” does not approve of will be met with violence on the streets.
When covid-19 is already claiming so many lives all over India, there is so much of chaos, anxiety, tension and negativity. At that point of time Bengal if facing twin challenges of the Pandemic and unprecedented post-poll violence only on the ground that some people decided to vote as per their own choice.