The nine-month old Narendra Modi government was all over opposition parties and was cruising till AAP put spokes in the BJP's wheel in Delhi. Is Modi's 'Ache Din' facing a serious threat both inside and outside the parliament?
The Modi government has faced a united opposition after the controversial Land Acquisition Bill was tabled in the Lok Sabha, with members of the Congress, Samajwadi Party, the Trinamool Congress (TMC), Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), Left parties and the AAP joining hands to accuse the NDA government of being against the farmers' interests.
The BJP has refuted the charge and claimed that "long-term interests" of the farmers had been kept in mind while preparing the draft.
Land Acquisition Bill 'draconian', anti-farmer:
Modi's all-time adversary Mamata Banerjee was the first to react to the bill and termed it ‘draconian' and urged the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government to withdraw the bill immediately.
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar strongly opposed the move of the government, and said it is against the rights of the farmers.
Samajwadi party supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav, with whom Modi appeared to have made a 'truce' when he attended Mulayam kin's tilak ceremony in UP, said that they are surprised to see the Modi government taking anti-farmer stand and is favouring industrialists. He said the farmers have nothing except the land in their possession and their consent is must before enacting the law.
The Congress was not so far behind and accused the BJP of failing to incorporate the viewpoints of the opposition in the Bill, inculpating the government of fundamentally altering the elements of the ordinance.
AAP leader Yogendra Yadav presented packets of salt to all Members of the Parliament as a symbol of protest, saying that those in power should not forget the contributions of farmers.
The land bill invited defiance outside the parliament from Anna Hazare's sit-in demonstration against government's move. He said that the ordinance on land acquisition is as draconian as British laws and it removes the need for seeking consent from farmers before taking away their land in the name of development projects. He added that he will not stop protests until the ordinance is completely withdrawn.
That's not all. BJP's ally Shiv Sena also boycotted NDA meeting and discussion on the bill. Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray said in a reply to reporters query that there is no question of supporting any legislation which goes against the interest of farmers.
Comments on Mother Teresa:
Narendra Modi has faced criticism for going soft on right-wing groups, ghar wapsi and there were words of caution from US President President Barack Obama on religious freedom. Modi later went public on the government's stand on religious freedom and assured strong action against those violating it.
But both BJP and Modi ran into rough weathers with RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat's comment on world renowned, Nobel Peace Prize winner Mother Teresa would land Modi in a spot. Bhagwat at an inaugural ceremony for an orphanage and a home for impoverished women in the state of Rajasthan said that,"There are no services like Mother Teresa's here, adding of the nun's work that "there was a motive behind it - that those who are rendered the service should become Christian."
Bhagwat comments drew sharp criticism both in India and outside with many doubting Modi's stand on charity worker like Mother Teresa.
Meenakshi Lekhi's support to RSS chief:
Adding more fuel to the controversy was comments from BJP leader Meenakshi Lekhi who claimed that Mother Teresa had herself in a book said that her job was to bring people to the fold of Christianity.
She reportedly said,"Kindly read Navin Chawla's book, who was an old Congress loyalist, on Mother Teresa, where Mother Teresa herself during an interview says that 'a lot of people confuse me as social worker, I am not a social worker. I am in the service of Jesus and my job is to spread the word of Christianity and bring people to its fold'," Lekhi added.
Now it all up to Modi and BJP to finds ways to counter the opposition. And it seems that issues of Land Acquisition Bill and Comments from RSS chief is heading towards another stalemate in Parliament.