The call for the so-called Third Front is not something new in Indian politics but what was interesting to note that the slow motion of the story of the front suddenly gained a momentum and culminated into an anti-communal front of 17 parties.
What could be possible cause for this sudden sense of urgency?
Third Front a political tool: More for Nitish and Mulayam?
One suspects certain parties are keen to use the Third Front as a tool for their own political benefits. For the Left and the JD(S), it is a desperate attempt to keep themselves afloat in the battlefield ahead of the big battle of 2014. But for parties like the JD(U) and SP, the Third Front offers a big opportunity to find a balance in the prestigious duel with Narendra Modi.
Third Front gives a good platform to Nitish and Mulayam
Both the JD(U) and SP are led by individuals who are equally ambitious to become the prime minister the country. They are also the leaders of parties which are currently in power in two key states of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh, respectively. But unlike Modi who is also in power in Gujarat, JD(U)'s Nitish Kumar and SP's Mulayam Singh Yadav have been facing a lot of heat in recent times in their respective states and there is a feeling that some sort of anti-incumbency mood is catching up with them.
Events in Bihar and UP required Nitish and Mulayam to target 'communal forces'
Uttar Pradesh has seen several riots ever since the SP came to power last year while Bihar has been rocked by two terror attacks since July. These issues have put both the SP and JD(U) administrations in a spot as the opposition has sharpened attack against them over the law and order situation in the two states. They had to find a way out of the mess before hoping to do well in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls and keep their prime ministerial dream alive. And nobody else could have been better than Narendra Modi to cater best to their interests.
Third Front at a time when Modi has started his t0urs of UP and Bihar
The time for raising the pitch for the Third Front couldn't have been more apt for Modi has just begun to tour the two key states of the Hindi heartland and neither Nitish nor Mulayam could have sat idle even as their competitor raced ahead with the public confidence. The call for a secular front is a desperate attempt to peg back Modi, even if slightly.
But will Third front help Nitish and Mulayam to hide administrative drawbacks?
But the challenge for both Nitish and Mulayam is that their credibility has seen a steep erosion. Another leader of their generation named Lalu Prasad is already behind bars while these two leaders are struggling to keep the administration of their states together. Nitish Kumar had to hit back at Modi at Rajgir or else his chief ministerial credibility was under great threat in the wake of the serial blasts.
Mulayam, on the other hand, has to clean up the image of his chief minister son's administration after the deadly Muzaffarnagar riots and both, to camouflage their parties' failure, turned the gun at Modi and the BJP, raking up the same-old communal-secular debate.
Nice way of jumbling up things by the two seasoned leaders. Confusion and chaos always pay off in Indian politics. However, that is only the interesting thing about the latest drama over the Third Front. Or else, it is just a hi-tea party.