Making too light a case of India's BJP party

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 07 September, 1999, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 07 September, 1999, 12:00am

I refer to your editorial 'Search for stability' (South China Morning Post, August 30) which seems to project an overly simplistic assessment on the Hindu Fundamentalist BJP and its allies coming to power in the forthcoming Indian parliamentary elections.

Rather than bring about much sought-after stability, the return to power of the BJP would lead not only to internal communal tensions but also heightened tensions with neighbours.

Voters' memories are short and have been clouded by the 'victory' in Kargill. However, prior to that, the record of the BJP Government was nothing short of shameful in respect to concerted attacks on minorities such as Christians and Muslims, escalating prices of essentials and also tampering with the education system of India.

These communal elements have not disappeared but have taken a back seat for the moment to capitalise on the soaring popularity and moderate image of the PM, Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

In Kargill, the BJP has found a 'formula' that works.

When faced with the realities of actually governing a nation, the BJP and its fundamentalist allies will resort to stirring up trouble with neighbours and within the country itself.

The BJP is already harping on increased budgets for defence as a priority.

With the fundamentalist BJP in power in India, coupled with a highly corrupt and weak government in Pakistan - both wielding nuclear weapons - the world should brace itself for some serious turbulence ahead.

SAMIR KUMAR Discovery Bay