I and many were having a lot of expectations from and big hope in, Nitish Kumar, Arvind Kejriwal and Mamta Banerji when they became chief ministers because of the contemporary and local reasons.
Nitish took the route of allying with the then major opposition party, BJP to win clear cut majority. BJP was good enough to play a subservient role and allowed Nitish to do whatever he liked. I had another weak reason to consider Nitish to be different, as he was engineer by qualification from a good enough institute. Nitish started well, particularly with road construction and law and order that was in shambles by the loot and misgoverance of Lalu and his clan for a long time. Many things improved, but at grassroots nothing changed in Bihar. The bureaucracy remained corrupt from top to the bottom. Many doable steps lost its priority. Corruption and quality of teaching in primary rural school remained where it was or got worse. Things went further downwards after Nitish broke his alliance with BJP and pushed them out. But much before that Nitish had made up his mind to become the only messiah of Bihar. Nitish thought with his yatras he can market himself sufficient enough to win the voters positive and unilateral response for him only. But it did not happen. Modi wave in last general election of 2014 swept him out. Nitish went to join his hands with Lalu and Sonia’s Congress. And then Nitish nominated a character named Manjhi as stop gap chief minister. It proved his flimsy faith in democratic system. But Nitish followed Sonia. If she could nominate PM, why can’t Nitish chose his CM? Nitish lost the great opportunity of lifting the living standard of the people of Bihar. Bihar remains the worst in education and prosperity even after a decade of Nitish control over everything in Bihar. Still today, the maximum number of Biharis go for higher education and special medical care outside the state. One can appreciate the poor condition of higher education in Bihar by one recent report. As reported, India Inc looks today to a large number of smaller towns- Bhubaneswar, Visakhapatnam, Baroda, Raipur, Nagpur…..- to bridge growing skills gap. But none of these are in Bihar. Should not Nitish Kumar take himself as responsible? While the states such as Andhra, Odhisha, Madhya Pradesh, Chattisgarh, Rajasthan are moving fast enough to join the league of developed states, Bihar remains at the bottom on every parameters of human development and its political leaders elected by the people are solely responsible for that. The people of Bihar must understand that its leaders, over the years and even today don’t want the grassroots to be better off. Only some goons and mafia members do get better living with such leaders.
Arvind was also a great hope as chief minister from whom I thought Delhi will become a model small state. His fast rise from when Delhi saw him as successful organiser of Anna movement against corruption to the responsibility of chief minister of Delhi, was just wonderful. I, here again, had a special reason for my expectations. Arvind is from IIT, Kharagpur, my own institute. But all that he did including the resignation and the contesting of huge number of parliamentary seats and its results on ground is just a history. I am neither an astrologer not political pundit, and I do not know what all Arvind will achieve in the long life. But I certainly hate his going to Dubai and New York begging for collecting funds from NRIs there just for his forthcoming assembly election for Delhi.
I was in West Bengal during the whole of my professional career in responsible positions of the biggest industrial units of the state when the Leftists took over from Congress and continued for record more than three decades with their misrule that killed all the industries of the state. I was very happy to see Mamta winning the great majority through exemplary perseverance even after many assaults on her by leftists. I knew she was finicky and unreliable. But still somewhere I was praying that she would select a great team and good advisors from the large store of intellectuals from Bengal in various fields to run her government and allow them to run the government rather expecting everyone to follow her dictates. But unfortunately, she has picked all bad tricks of leftists and is making the people at large restive. Her party men are resorting to all sorts of gimmicks as major obstructionists to stop the present government to come out with major reform measures for growth of the country. Bengal will have to wait to see a right change. Modi is the only enemy for Mamta today, and her men in Delhi are doing their best get noticed by her.
All three persons had all the potentials for contributing in great way to the country by taking care of the states they were destined to head. But unfortunately, Nitish, Arvind and Mamta, all failed the people and shirked their responsibility. At least, the first two could have been PM too, but now I think every one will dislike my prophecy. Nitish is again in forefront in a new grouping of all so-called socialist parties with leaders such Mulayam, Lalu, DevGowda and others. I am sure God and Indians at large will save this great country.