Monday, May 28, 2012

Teekhi Baat with Baba Ramdev / May 26, 2012/IBN7

Baba Ramdev spoke about his stance against the UPA, its policies, the income tax notices received by his trust, the change in treatment meted out to him by the government since he started agitation to bring back black money and his new andolan ....


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Our guest for today on Teekhi Baat is a man who went on to become Political Guru from Yoga Guru, Baba Ramdev, welcome to our studio.

BR: Pranaam, Prabhuji, you keep on giving me new nomenclatures.

PC: What all I didn’t name you as sex guru, tax guru, political guru, yoga guru, now political guru

BR: Yoga is connected to every aspect of life. Where all Yoga is connected, that aspect of life will keep on improving. That work will be for the development of the country, though tax. And from where all yoga will go, life will become cleaner.

PC: Baba you have crores of followers in the country, they are confused regarding what you are. There is a saying, When in Rome, do as Romans do.

BR: I think Yoga is connected to every aspect of life. And when we want an ideal life, an ideal family, ideal society, ideal nation, then why not ideal politics? When we see every aspect of life in connection with Yoga, then there will be ‘satavikta, samarasta’ and purity, and till the ‘samarastak’ society is not formed, where all people get economic and social justice, this is what our elders have taught us, do such a work due to which our family and nation does not suffer any taint. As you sow, so shall you reap.

PC: I did you 12 interviews, but did not hear the kind of language from you that I heard recently. Like you said that reservation should be on the basis of religion and caste, was this to enhance your popularity

BR: On what sentence are you asking me Prabhuji. More than 10 crore people listen to me on television every day, I have done gathering of more than 11 crore people, I am telling you that I don’t differentiate between poor and poor, dalit and dalit, everywhere there are poor, in upper castes, dalits and Muslims. We will have to think of upliftment of everybody, only then will the society will have balance. I don’t know what 341, 222, 323 is, I have nothing to do with sections or reservation. I have reservation on the fact that people are divided on the basis of caste and religion here, now even poor are being divided, there are poor in upper castes, dalit and Muslims.

PC: There should be reservation for poor, whether Hindu or Muslim

BR: That is what I had said. You would have heard, I said that I don’t differentiate between dalit and dalit, that was it, and I don’t know how it was picked up in what manner.

PC: It was a function of a specific community hence it was picked up, don’t you think what you meant was there should be reservation on religious lines.

BR: Reservation on the lines of reservation is never for the good, I have said this all along. The economic condition of people, on that basis, on the basis of economic condition, if people get reservation, because there are many such people, who need to be uplifted, if we don’t think about them, then it will not be good for your future, future generations and our children because see the issues in the country today Naxalism, Maoism.

PC: You meant that there should be reservation for poor, be it any caste or religion

BR: Yes

PC: But then it came on tv, that Baba wears Bhagwa, now he has become secular, now he should wear green clothes, white clothes,

BR: People will skewed brains, Prabhuji, you know more than me, are there in every caste, community, religion and country, hence we should not bother about them. We should speak of akhand Bharat. Prabhuji, there was one Akhand Bharat in the Vedic times, from Himalaya, Kailash Mansarovar to Sri Lanka, from Afghanistan to Burma. Then there was India of the middle ages, and then Sardar Vallabhai Patel dreamt of a Akhand Bharat in which 565 principalities were integrated. Today when we talk of Akhand Bharat, Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Christian, Dalit, Valmiki, all have to be taken together. Other we will become contractor of one community, one caste, one religion. We will have to be Bharatiya, in what is poor in bharat, people from any caste upper or dalit may be poor, be it Muslim or Hindu. The upliftment of the poor will have to be thought about otherwise it will be a problem for the future generations. Naxalism, Maoism,

PC: Babaji, you issue was black money, you stressed on that, now forgetting that you are not stressing too much on that.

BR: Please see, I do sabha for 365 days, If one day I went to Muslims, what crime did I do, Muslims are our own

PC: They are Bharatiya

BR: There are our humwatan, and I say, go back 100, 200, 300 years our religion may be different by not our ancestors, blood and family is not different. We were one country, one ancestor,

PC: Am speaking of black money

BR: Black money will come, and if we don’t have ‘samarasta, sadhbhavna’, then will money be able to save humanity.

PC: Pranab Mukherjee recently issue white paper, you would have seen it.

BR: Earlier what they have done is tried to fool the country, now even in the whitepaper they are fooling and betraying the country in the amount of black money, regarding how much black money is in what country.

PC: In report it is written that Bharatiya don’t has the most amount of black money abroad, but you say that Bharatiya have the most largest amount of money abroad.

BR: Prabhuji, let me tell you straight away, where the money has been invested, and from where it is coming let me tell you, it is seen, but the government has gone blind, deaf, mute, it is on ventilator, its day of expiry have come. Now think, there is one lakh tonne of gold in this country, which is worth 300 lakh crores, now reserve bank itself agrees that 20,000 25,000 tonne is there. But almost all of the economists say, from where this money has been invested in gold, even Pranab Mukherjee said that it is in Jewellery and Gold. It should be taxed. One lakh tonne gold worth 300 lakh crore, from where has this money come. Almost 20 lakh crore from foreign has come to our country under the guise of FII, from Mauritious route, 10 lakh crore came, nobody knows the owner. One need not be surprised if it is more than 300, 400, 500 lakh crore. Now, I don’t talk without any facts and figures and proof, take the CAG report, one could have got 10.66 lakh crore royalty, from coal, but it was not auctioned,

PC: Now they have lessened it to 1 lakh crore something

BR: Now 200 lakh crore worth of coal 50 billion tonnes, even if you take the minimum rate of coal, it is a 200 lakh crore scam. The most amount of loot is happening in natural resources. Now government says that there is no black money there. Hence, the most amount of black money has been accumulated via natural resources after that there is in drugs, education, black marketing, even in IPL.

PC: In IPL everything is white

BR: It is there in IPL

PC: Everything is white

BR: Arre sahab

PC: I am coming to that, but first tell me you have had such a big andolan on black money, do you tell you followers that don’t earn black money, don’t shy away from paying tax, do you give such speeches

BR: I give every day, I tell that it is ‘haraam ki kamai’

PC: That is different, I am talking about tax evasion

BR: Haraam and black is same. I say that even dowry is haraam ki kamai, it is the earning of your father and father in law, which you have not earned, you have no right on it.

PC: We should pay our taxes, not pay bribe, take it

BR: Don’t take or give bribe. Work with purity, we have lived like that and all our bhakts, supporters, everyday, one to two lakh people meet me,

PC: Then you have to tell them

BR: We tell them, but Prabhuji you don’t listen

PC: I saw you live the other day, saying that there is so much black money in the country, so much it out

BR: You should listen, you listen for just one day

PC: You should given speeches like god, Tathastu, don’t keep black money, and whatever is there, submit income tax,

BR: We people want to be human and let the gods rule be there on earth.

PC: I have seen two changes recently, you spoke on different issues and you started a business in the name of Patanjali. You are going on to become businessman, is this true or false,

BR: Prabhuji, if Mahatma Gandhi works for swadeshi, then he is our role model, Bal Gangadhar Tilak, he also worked for swadeshi. Only Khadi is not represent swadeshi, not even one rupee should go out of country, Yog, Ayurveda, swadeshi are our Rishikarma. Our age old Rishis and even present day mahapurush be it Bal Gangadhar Tilak, Gokhale, Mahatma Gandhi,

PC: They did not start in their own name

BR: Where did we start from my name, it there any business on Baba’s name. There is no business in our trust, it is for seva, and we guide companies, and cheap and best, from 300 to 1647 per cent cheap medicines. Which means what is available in the market for Rs. 30 we sell for 20. Hence, products for common man at cheap rates, the tradition of Yoga and ayurveda which had been forgotten, starting it again, there is no ‘punya karam’ than this. Coca Cola, Pepsi, Thumbs Up, Colgate, Pepsodent, we have taken a decision of driving them all out. Hence, not even one rupee of the country should go outside.

PC: You have a fight against foreign companies

BR: This is going on from long time. We said that the country is being looted from four sides, one the one side is corrupt politicians, corrupt officer and MNCs. If this loot is stop only then this country can become an economic super power.

PC: Hence you started to provide ayurvedic medicines to people at low cost.

BR: That is happening, indigenous treatments will run and are successful. This 200 year old allopathy, I don’t criticize it, in emergency take it sometimes. But one ‘arab’ year old, we have the oldest civilisation, the world’s first treatment way is ours, and it is scientific and effective.

PC: Now you business has not even fully come up, but you have got Rs. 58 crore notice from the government. Earlier you got FERA notice, all this till where will you fight the government

BR: On June 3, we will raise a big question in front of the government, I already said that the government is already dead by its own acts, in the whole country it is being criticised, the sins that it has committed. Now they say that will send notice to Baba, earlier even in Ramlila maidan, the government sent an e mail was sent that terrorists may kill Baba and there are anti national elements all around Ramlila maidan. Muslim people may kill Baba. First the government made an attempt to kill me was made by farce, in which the government was not successful. Now was a revolutionary not jailed, or hanged or troubled. I committed only one mistake, for 20 years Baba was god, and 25 chief ministers, three prime ministers, three presidents, and when I came to airport, four ministers, not even came to receive Obama. Baba was god before June 4, now they see devil in Baba, not they can see terrorist in Baba, they say I am anti national element,

PC: Yes, you are ready to go to jail

BR: I am ready to go to jail and face the bullets, but on chest not by betrayal.

PC: People kill by betrayal, like Shivaji was

BR: That is why they are moving ahead, on June 4, they that preparation to kill me, which they couldn’t do, now they have told, that they could not do what they wanted to on June four, now they are showing black flags,

PC: See, like what government did to Lokpal bill, Anna Hazare met you, but the Lokpal bill has gone, in the ditch.

BR: Please see, Prabhuji, the war will start from June 3,

PC: What are you going to do, with Anna or alone

BR: Anna sahab will come, the whole country will be involved

PC: From Delhi

BR: In Delhi, Anna sahab will come, Anna and Baba are not the issue, the issue pertains to the country. It is the biggest issue in the country. To save the country, finish the menace of black money, finishing corruption, and to finish this corrupt administration and establish a just administration. Now only those people who do this will rule the country. And I say on seedhi and teekhi baat, if one soldier does not fight on the border, or lays down his arms, or runs away, will you suspend him or not, if a teacher does not teach, a doctor does not treat, he is suspended, now this government has been formed to sell the country or to safeguard it, to develop the country or ruin it completely, in the whole world you see what is happening to our country, on the one had the value of rupee has gone down so much, to Rs. 55 to a dollar which has not happened in history, and inflation is increasing every day, you see the deficit is increasing every day, is this a government, ‘ is sarkaar ko to chullu bhar paani mein doob ke mar jaana chahiye’. If this government does not do what we say it will fall, this is the teekhi baat,

PC: Means you will do a revolution against it

BR: Please see, the country is not of parties, is it ours also. See, this country is not of one political party, one family, this is of 121 crore Indians, and if they don’t act as per their responsibility, we will save the country not let it be sold.

PC: You are depending on opposition parties, but BJP on the issue of Lokpal colluded with the government. You believe them, you keep on meeting its leaders.

BR: I keep on meeting everybody. I had met Rahulji too,

PC: Do you fully trust BJP

BR: I trust 121 crore people of the country, in a democracy the people are the biggest.

PC: Tell me one thing, teekhi baat, when Baba and people who serve the country grow intolerant, start beating up if somebody starts asking questions, then there is a doubt why it is happening

BR: We did not get anybody beat up

PC: You bhakts did it, in a spurt of anger, should not have done

BR: Who was beaten

PC: Recently,

BR: That is wrong, Rahul Gandhi was also shown black flags, stones were thrown, shoes were thrown

PC: That is wrong thing

BR: Because of their deeds. People threw, we did not get them thrown. And when you are talking beating up, that is a wrong thing, his grand uncle, father, his family, they are our teachers. Let it be enquired in Madhya Pradesh.

PC: It should not happen,

BR: It is a wrong thing, wrong information.

PC: Tell me one thing, the government has completed three years, what do you feel , how many numbers will you give them

BR: I will give 0 numbers to government.

PC: 0

BR: They sold the country, in whole. Such a big enemy, such corruption, when one listened to 1.76 lakh crore 2g scam, 70,000 crore common wealth game, people said that there is loot, then 10.66 lakh crore coal scam, 200 lakh crore scam, hey bhagwaan, such big looters they have no shame. I don’t say that throw stones at them, but tomorrow if people start throwing stones at them, if people start abusing them, if people start spitting at them, then Baba is not responsible. Their deeds are like that

PC: When will you join Anna’s andolan in Maharashtra

BR: Please see, we will go with them after June 3,

PC: You will go in Maharashtra with him

BR: Surely, why not

PC: Anna said that they will work against the government 2014, will you also

BR: We have started already. We have started taking gathering of 2 lakh people, be with me for one day and see, why Baba is awake from three in the morning to 10 in the night.

PC: What is your target, in one sentence, Teekhi Baat

BR: Please see, Prabhuji, these people are not thinking about the betterment of the country,

PC: These people means UPA

BR: Yes, yes. I was born in a farmers family, I have seen what poverty is, have lived it. These are wazir people we are fakirs, but in the fight between sin and truth

PC :What is your aim of 2014

BR: Now we have only one aim, the looters, corrupt, traitors, the ones who are playing with the respect of India, the people will never tolerate them, and in 2013, ‘ inki 13 vi ho jayegi’ they will not reach in 2014.

PC: Lets see if what you say comes true, our best wishes with you, thank you for coming to our studio.

No Ideology, No Commitment, No Conviction/ The Sunday Standard/May 27, 2012

POWER & POLITICS

No Ideology, No commitment, No Conviction Add up to No Future

The megaphone from Mumbai is loud and clear. The BJP is more confused and plagued with internal conflicts than ever before. It is left with only managers and has lost leaders who can inspire and lead the party. Its honchos have acquired the art of managing the media, corporate leaders, the culturati and the chatterati, but have forgotten the technique of connecting with the ordinary karyakarta. Its leaders are experts in choosing words meant for the media but offer no clear message, which an ordinary worker can carry back to his constituency. At the end of the two-day conclave, there was no clarity about the command and control system in the party. Those who occupied places of prominence on the dais painted the party as one of India’s worst-divided political outfits. The meeting indulged in UPA bashing. It adopted well-drafted resolutions on agriculture and politics. Former party president Rajnath Singh made a scathing attack on the UPA’s agriculture policy and made innovative suggestions for development. Uma Bharti got a standing ovation for her Ganga revival plan. But the party’s spokespersons forgot to inform the press about such constructive discourses. The BJP’s economic resolution was more of an apology for India Inc than a boost for the party’s core constituency.

However, the debate and dialogue on serious issues barely got single-line space in newspapers, or 20-second clips on TV. The media plunged into in-depth and ‘exclusive’ analyses of L K Advani’s and Sushma Swaraj’s absence from the post-meeting rally; the backroom machinations behind Narendra Modi’s absence and presence at the meeting; and the meaning and message of Nitin Gadkari getting a second term. A TV journalist even made an emphatic announcement that Gadkari is on probation for the next five months, and his second term isn’t as certain as is being projected. The fault lies not with the media, but with those leaders who were busy giving their own spin to the clash of the pygmies within the party. Mumbai turned out to be a venue for the revival of the Mahabharata of Maharashtra. Gadkari got the assurance of a second term. But not without shedding some of his own political weight.

If Mumbai was meant to project an image of unity in diversity, it turned out to be one of the BJP’s most disastrous conclaves. Instead of projecting the progressive work done by its chief ministers in BJP-ruled states, its top leaders reveled in personality bashing, leaving no one in doubt that the party was without a slogan, strategy or solution. Though Modi charged the Congress of being a party without a niti, neta or niyat, it is his own organisation that lacks a credible agenda for governance. Ironically, the BJP’s self-imposed Central leadership has always failed to enthuse cadres with the development gains achieved by chief ministers like Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Narendra Modi, Raman Singh, Manohar Panikkar and Prem Kumar Dhumal. None of them are allowed to take centrestage on platforms where the party’s problems and programmes are discussed. In contrast, Congress President Sonia Gandhi always ensures that all Congress chief ministers, CWC members and other prominent leaders share the dais with her.

The party waiting to replace the Congress at the Centre is still paralysed by personalities driven by personal ambitions. With a foe like the BJP, the Congress doesn’t need a friend to retain power in Delhi. Over 150 wise men and women from various parts of the country had gathered in Mumbai to discuss the party’s future. Instead, they ended up talking about its dirty past, promiscuous present and uncertain future. They returned to their states sans any mantras for success. They had only one question: who is leading the party in Delhi? Is it Advani who chose to skip the rally in protest against a second term for Gadkari? Is it Sushma who didn’t receive full support from her party to lead a frontal attack on the government in Parliament? Or Gadkari who had to sack a trusted RSS swayamsewak so that the party’s most successful and powerful chief minister, Narendra Modi, could attend the conclave and address a public meeting with Gadkari? Or was it Arun Jaitley for whom the air-conditioned thrills and frills of the glamorous IPL are more soothing and rewarding than the sweaty surroundings of a crammed hall in south Mumbai?

Tragically, the BJP, a party of cadres and commitments, has turned into a coalition of individuals who follow the principle of convenience and not conviction. If it is dreaming of a triumphant return to power, it has to shed its image of a party without an ideology. Currently, it is perceived as the most dependable, friendly opposition to the UPA. The joke in party circles is that the BJP may be in the opposition, but some of its leaders are part of the UPA coalition. It is this pro-government coterie that has kept the internal war alive so that the Congress can survive the rest of its term peacefully. The mesmerised captive audience in Mumbai failed to see through the games being played from the dais.

Prabhuchawla@newindianexpress.com
Follow me on Twitter @PrabhuChawla

Monday, May 21, 2012

Power & Politics/ The Sunday Standar/ May 20, 2012

POWER & POLITICS

It's Nitin Gadkari versus The Lotus Eaters, and BJP's Future is at Stake

Politics is the art of making friends and acquiring power. The BJP has turned politics into a game of turning friends into enemies and losing power. For the past weeks, it has not been in the news for making life miserable for the UPA government. Instead, its leaders have been busy planting stories concerning a likely second term for the 55-year-old party president, Nitin Gadkari. None of them are talking about how to win power in 2014. They aren’t even bothered about the open rebellions by some of the party’s powerful regional satraps.

The BJP’s current crises of identity stems from the stark reality that it hasn’t been able to find a credible replacement for the ailing Atal Bihari Vajpayee and the ageing Lal Krishna Advani. They were the Twin Towers of the BJP’s Himalayan edifice. Tragically, the party leaders both have groomed are currently the real source of trouble. Their egos are bigger and heavier than their weight and size. None of them can relate either with party ideology or organisation. They have never run an outfit at the state level. It was due to this lack of institutional experience that the RSS has always opted for an organisational person to lead the party at the Centre. Both Rajnath Singh and Gadkari fall into the category of leaders known for their organisational skills and commitment to the Sangh Parivar ideology. But those who have been imposed on the party by the corporate-backed coalition of urban elite have accepted neither as leaders. At every stage, their decisions were challenged or ridiculed in the media. They weren’t even allowed to choose their teams. For the past decade, the BJP presidency has been reduced to a mere farce by which decisions and directives were thrust upon the party by a cabal of leaders who have never fought or won an election. The state of the BJP president is like that of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

Gadkari has been in office but has never been in power in Delhi. The BJP is being managed and manipulated not from 11 Ashok Road—its formal headquarters in New Delhi—but in the drawing rooms of corporate leaders or TV chat shows. When 1,500-odd party leaders drawn from various states and districts assemble in Mumbai middle of this week, they will not be discussing how to revive the party. They will be given off-the-record advice and briefings about the possible fallout of giving Gadkari yet another term.

The BJP, a cadre-based party, is now infected with personality cults. Individuals are mightier than the party’s ideological might. Earlier, it was run on the bottom-upward philosophy under which a person from the district level could rise to the state or the national scene. Now, it has adopted a top-downwards approach in which members of a clique appoint themselves as Central leaders and force cadres to accept their authority. Even the decision to choose the next party boss is being discussed, dissected and debated more in boardrooms and media columns than within the party. It is well known that The Gang of Four doesn’t want Gadkari to get a second term. Because, if he does, the so-called GenNext leaders will become history, as none of them will be in a position to lead the organisation.

The BJP has now understood the irrelevance of the current Central leadership, which has led the party to such a disastrous state. They may collectively or individually be able to use their money and muscle power to influence the party’s direction and intimidate the president, but they just don’t realise that they can’t win an election. The current war within is not just about whether Gadkari gets yet another term. It is about how to ensure that he gets it only on their terms. While the national executive meet will take the final call on amending the party’s constitution, questions have been raised about Gadkari’s competence to keep the party together. Apart from branding him as one who patronises corporate-sponsored leaders, his challengers are spreading stories that Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi and a few other leaders won’t accept Gadkari’s authority.

Earlier, Gadkari was painted as a small-town leader who used his RSS and business connections to climb the political ladder. The full-time job of his in-house adversaries is to undermine his authority as the president and project him as a person who is being imposed on them by the RSS. Gadkari is no pushover, however. With age on his side, he is determined to prove himself. He has suffered humiliation and defiance. The next few days will determine whether the BJP can restore its institutional and ideological mechanisms and crush individual ambitions. May 2012 will determine and draw the battlelines for the war in May 2014.

prabhuchawla@newindianexpress.com
Follow me on Twitter @PrabhuChawla

Sangma on Teekhibaat/ IBN7 May 19, 2012


"I’ll be constitutional, not a rubber stamp"


I’m in the fray because an adivasi should become president too, former Lok Sabha Speaker Purno Sangma says on Teekhi Baat on IBN7. Excerpts:


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PC: Tell me one thing are you in the presidential race as of now?

PS: No, I was not in the race. But on the 9th of this month, in the constitutional club, there was an adivasi sammelan, in that gathering we have passed a proposal. In the 60 years of India’s republic, every class of people, be it scheduled class, muslim, sikh, women have become the President of the country. But, till today no adivasi has become Prime Minister. And there are more than 10 crore adivasi in the country.

PC: 10 Crore

PS: Yes, certainly, More than ten crores.

PC: It is approximately 8 to 9 per cent of the population

PS: Certainly, that is why we kept this proposal, in which it was said, we will me leader of every political party, and tell them that this time the adivasi candidate must be considered, that is all.

PC: How did your name come up?

PS: I met Tamil Nadu CM Jayalalitha, I had gone to meet her three – four days ago, and I spoke to Navin saab, Orrissa chief minister on phone and he said that the next president must be an adivasi. They asked who all are the candidate, I said that we have names of at least six candidates, one is SC Jamir, five time chief minister of Nagaland, Maharashtra Governor, Goa governor, he is from the Congress party. The second name we have given is Kishore Chandra Deo, he is from Congress, is the tribal affairs minister,

PC: Maharaja

PS: is Maharaja also, and third name was Arvind Neram, he too is from Congress, fourth is Kariya Munda, of BJP, he is the deputy speaker of the Lok Sabha now, after that my name was also there, former speaker. Some people, this time, said that the president should be a non political person. If non political has to be taken then we also have non political candidate.

PC: Who

PS: JM Lyngdoh. He was the chief election commissioner. The name of Quraishi is also in the fray, because he is chief election commissioner, when Quraishi name can be considered why not JM Lyngdoh. We have given this six names to everybody. We are ready with any of the six names that political parties choose.

PC: But who suggested your name, Jayalalitha?

PS: Jayalalitha, Naveen Patnaik.

PC: They would have asked you, do you agree or not

PS: No, they have asked, I said that when the name comes before everybody and if a consensus is formed, then I have no issues.

PC: It means even you are a candidate, you gave approval to your name.

PS: In the six names that have been given, my name is also there.

PC: You have accepted Naveen Patnaik and Jayalalitha.

PS: Certainly.

PC: Hence, you are in the race as your name is one among the six

PS: Yes, among six.

PC: Do you think, all political parties, like you went to meet Jayalalitha, then she would have said in front of you that why not you, did or did she not say it?

PS: Hmm, she said.

PC: Then you said, yes

PS: smiles.

PC: You said this

PS: Certainly

PC: When you had gone did Jayalalitha ask you or did you suggest your name

PS: No, no, no, she said

PC: How

PS: Why are you not becoming (a candidate), you should be. If your name is there we have no objection

PC: Which means you gave six names, out of which your name was acceptable.

PS: Certainly

PC: But do you feel that you will be acceptable to the Congress

PS: No, that is not the case, we are trying, and the issue of adivasis, we are putting forth

PC: Whom all did you meet till now?

PS: Till now, I have met BJP-NDA’s Gadkari saab.

PC: You have met?

PS: Yes, and the leader of opposition in Lok Sabha, have met Sushma Swaraj. Met leader of opposition in Rajya Sabha, Arun Jaitley.

PC: And you all go as a team

PS: As a team, Mulayamsinghji,

PC: You also met him

PS: Yes, met Nitish Kumar, met Sharad Yadav, met Ram Vilas Paswan,

PC: You suggest all six names

PS: Yes, all six, all of them

PC: Did any others take your name

PS: Somebody took, somebody did not take. Because, like BJP leaders said that it is a very serious issue, and decision cannot be taken on an individual level. Hence when will have our national executive

PC: In Mumbai

PS: In Mumbai, the a discussion on the issue will be held. Only after that will we be able to tell what our position is.

PC: And Nitish, what did he tell you

PS: And Nitish said

PC: NDA meeting

PC: Not NDA, they will discuss in internal meeting.

PC: And you have not met Mamta till now

PS: Not till now.

PC: Have you sought time from Mamta

PS: I have sought time, from Mamta, from Mayawati, have met Sharad Pawar in the morning as part of a delegation and have sought time from Madam Sonia Gandhi.

PC: Sharad Pawar is leader of your party, what did he say, we will talk with the government as part of UPA.

PS: He said that we are in UPA ally, hence cannot take any decision alone. Secondly, we have only fifteen MPs, which is nothing. Hence, it is difficult for us to sponsor a candidate. Even then , what other political parties are thinking, we will discuss and find out.

PC: He did not stop you and said that you should not contest

PS: No, no, no, he did not stop me.

PC: Didn’t he say that Sangma saab, you are leader of my party and without asking you announced your name

PS: We did not go to anybody taking the party name. We went with tribal leaders, because in the delegation, even Maharashtra NCP president Mr. Pichad, even he was there.

PC: Orissa tribal your leader, NCP supported you

PS: NCP supported, like wise there was Arvind Netam from Congress, Kulaste saab from BJP,

PC: Was he accompanying you all

PS: He was accompanying us as part of delegation.

PC: Kulaste saab went with you

PS: There is no question of party here, till now

PC: But your became leader of tribal netas

PS: No, no that is not the case. It is a collective decision

PC: That means they have collectively decided that it will be good if there is agreement on your name

PS: No, regarding that we have called a meeting on 24th

PC: Of tribal leaders

PS: Of tribal leaders, on that they we will finalize. Till now we want to know what all political parties want, whom they want

PC: Till 24th you will meet everybody

PS: Before that we will meet others too.

PC: Didn’t you request for time from Sonia Gandhiji

PS: Have request, certainly.

PC: You didn’t get time till now

PS: Till now, have not got.

PC: You will meet her, after that Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh, but you are only meeting political leaders now

PS: We have requested for time from Manmohan Singh, Pranab Mukherjee, because Pranab Mukherjee is Lok Sabha leader and Manmohan is Rajya Sabha leader and Madam Sonia Gandhi is UPA chairperson. Hence, we have requested for time from all three.

PC: That you must make some tribal leader

PS: That’s all

PC: But again and again the question arises, you are saying that the candidate should be a tribal, I want to ask you that you have been a good lok sabha speaker, people respect you a lot, don’t you think in this country caste, community, religion, adivasi, tomorrow harijan, day after woman, sometimes Muslim, sometimes Christian, is it not right for this country

PS: This is not right but this is what is going on. Please see, we thought it is not right, that why we had kept quiet. And we saw that by keeping quiet for 65 years, we got nothing. Hence, like other people are asking, asking for their rights, then we thought why should we keep quiet.

PC: You thought other caste, community are moving ahead

PS: They are moving ahead

PC: And political parties are standing in their support

PS: Certainly, certainly, certainly. In 1995,when I became cabinet minister, media asked me how are you feeling, I said I am feeling very good because, in Bharat, in our great country, I for the first time, adivasi, have become cabinet minister, that is why I am happy.

PC: For the first time adivasi had become

PS: Yes, yes,

PC: Kishore Chandra..

PS: He became recently. At that time, it was big news in the newspapers; I was in 15 Safdarjung, Vajpayjee came to my house, he asked him ‘Sangma saab, what you said, that first time an adivasi has became a cabinet minister, is it true’

PC: Even I didn’t know this

PS: Vajpayjee asked, ‘is it true?’ I said Vajpayjee, it is true.

PC: Now, there are two three, tribal ministers, cabinet ministers

PS: Now there are. Vajpayjee said how Bharat can do such a mistake. Hence, it is very important to put it in the mind. Till 1995, no adivasi became cabinet minister, many people did not know, till we have said it

PC: Hence you mean, the campaign that you ran that a tribal should became president, not because you want to become president, but because you want the tribals to get the rights that they have not got till now.

PS: Exactly, that is it, that is it.

PC: It is a fight for tribal rights

PS: It is a fight for tribal rights

PC: let it is from any community in the country.

PS: I said in the meeting, fight for your rights, if you don’t get it this time, don’t lose heart, next time one may get, after 10 years one may get, but one should claim it, till today we did not claim it.

PC: Hence the fight of Sangma is not for himself,

PS: No, not at all

PC: It is for tribal leaders

PS: Certainly

PC: For tribal community

PS: Certainly

PC: Initially it was said that caste, community basis of decision takes the nation backwards.

PS: That is there

PC: Good leaders like you, who have an image,

PS: What you are saying is true, I agree, even I don’t want, but the reality is that caste based, religion based has been going on and will go on in Bharat. What will one do, to stop it there is only one way, education, education, once the people of the country will be educated, or literate, then all this distinction, differences, votebank politics,

PC: You are saying education will remove this

PS: Only education can remove it, otherwise no. But as of today, they way we are going, the caste based politics is going on. Please see, we tribals don’t believe in caste, we believe in equality, it is not in our blood, this difference, upper caste, lower caste, middle caste, this is not in our blood, but we have become a part of this network.

PC: Don’t you think that Sangma saab, that Sangma has been projected not on merit because he was good speaker, he has been a good leader, but because he is a tribal. You are tribal, hence you want to became President, Purno Sangma does not have any other qualification,

PS: Our message is this, being tribal should not be a disqualification. A tribal has everything, knowledge, education, his record is fine, he is an administrator, on merit, but, but because he is a tribal he is not getting, this should not happen,

PC: Happening in the country?

PS: This is happening in the country,

PC: You are saying Purno Sangma reached this position

PS: It is not a question of Purno Sangma,

PC: I am taking name because it is in focus, Purno Sangma today could have been Prime Minister, Finance Minister, because no tribal became finance minister, home minister, external affairs minister,

PS: Did not became

PC: He did not become, because he is a tribal

PS: Tribal

PC: Even if he would have been qualified, he would have not been made

PS: Even then he would have not been made, so being tribal should not be disqualification, which is happening now.

PC: It is a complex. Many times it seems that Purno Sangma, after reaching this age, what is your age

PS: 65 years

PC: Only 65, you are younger to me, am a year elder to you.

PS: I was born fifteen days after independence.

PC: Now you feel after independence became president

PS: Did not became

PC: Many born before independence became

PS: Certainly.

PC: only they became president, Prime Minister

PS: Even Prime Minister, people born after independence, nobody became

PC: Even Rajiv Gandhi was born before independence.

PS: Before independence

PC: Neither became Prime Minister nor President

PS: Yes

PC: Which means now the number of people who were born after independence will come.

PS: Should come

PC: Tell me one thing, many times it seems that he Purno Sangma family, many times is over ambitious politically, like your son is leader of opposition and finance minister, the daughter is a minister at centre, then why should not Sangma saab become President. Many times a person becomes politically ambitious

PS: That is not the case, that is not the case, please see, I was a school dropout, I stopped going to school after the death of my father, Christian missionaries picked up and educated us, and after that I became MP and have been an MP for 30 years and been in Delhi. Because of this, our two girls and boys, studied St. Columbus, Jesus and Mary Convent, America and England. Because of whom this happened, because of every vote of my constituency, you see, my children owe a debt to ever vote their father has got.

PC: They sent you to parliament, then you could have resources

PS: Otherwise they would have been labourers. That is why I said when your are educated, have got education in London, America, now you have to pay back.

PC: Many times it is like making you President, because there is an old statement, that you made against Soniaji, that foreigner should not become Prime Minister of this country

PS: That is very old

PC: very old, now you are not on that line anymore

PS: Not on that line anymore, forgot

PC: That has become history

PS: That was history that is over. You would have known that I went to meet her, I have apologised too and they had come to my sons wedding reception.

PC: Do you feel that when somebody like you becomes President

PS: No, no

PC: I am telling you that if you became President, like as a speaker you were independent, like you have run speakership, will you run the president’s office in the same way. That is why it seems you will not get support of Congress party,

PS: Please see, i, Loksabha, according to the rules, exactly according to the constitution, not outside the law, as laid down in law and constitution, that is what I followed. Let anybody become the President tomorrow, work should be exactly according to the Constitution, according to law

PC: President has lots of power according to the constitution, who has to be made Prime Minister, if it is there in a coalition, then the President uses his power

PS: Please see, in the constitution, there are two things,

PC: If there is clear majority then there is no option for the Presidnet

PS: See, what is there in the constitution, the letter of the constitution, the spirit of the constitution, you read the letter of the constitution, the President shall appoint the Prime Minister and other ministers on the advice of the Prime Minister, which means president can appoint anybody as Prime Minister.

PC: Correct, first step he can take, who enjoys the majority of the house

PS: This is according to the letter of the constitution, but the spirit is not the same, the spirit says one who has the majority of the house, this will have to be considered by anyone who becomes President.

PC: Every ruling party wants to President who is rubber stamp.

PS: That is not the case

PC: That is the image, like somebody signed emergency from the bathroom, somebody signed some other bills. Hence, if Purno Sangma becomes with everybody’s agreement, will you also be a rubber stamp.

PS: Constitution of India stamp

PC: Purno Sangma, please tell the sentence, will be a stamp of the constitution of India

PS: Certainly, will do according to what is laid down in the constitution.

PC: Will follow both the letter and spirit of the constitution

PS: Both

PC: But do you think that you will get support from the Congress

PS: Now to form a consensus, the demand that we have, that is going on now. Who will be the candidate, how many votes will he get,

PC: If there is a consensus among all non congress parties, left, BJP, BSP, Samajwadi Party, if Purno Sangma becomes consensus candidate of all, then you will not move from the seat.

PS: Let’s see what happens, now many days are left, have to be given till July end. Now we are in May, the whole month of June is pending, then what will be the political situation, political trend, what political development,

PC: Will you still be a candidate, if you are not a consensus candidate

PS: No, no, will decide in the next 15 days. Will sit again after 15 days and discuss with you.

PC: Now you have not decided

PS: Now not decided, now testing is going on, we are testing the grounds.

PC: If you do not get support you will withdraw

PS: If there is no support then why will I

PC: But till now you have a desire, if political parties support you, then you will surely think

PS: Parties, to support adivasi candidate, not Purno Sangma, adivasi candidate

PC: Purno Sangma’s name came, you yourself accepted.

PS: Both parties gave endorsement

PC: But you accepted, then they announced. You said that they said to you, you said you will consider

PS: It will be a collective decision, we have a meeting on 26th, in which a final decision will be taken.

PC: Which means at the moment you have not moved away from the field, you are in the field as yet

PS: Am in the field

PC: Thank you very much for coming to our studio.

PS: Thank you, Prabhuji !