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Smart card, wild card and Presidential election 2017
"It is better to be defeated on principle than to win on lies." – Arthur Calwell

AC was an Australian politician who was known for his strong stand against Australia's military involvement in the Vietnam War, and the introduction of conscription to provide troops for the war.

He had raised his voice at a time when the Vietnam War was initially very popular in Australia also and continued to be so for long. He was a member of the Australian House of Representatives for 32 years from 1940–72, Immigration Minister from 1945–49 and Leader of the Australian Labour Party from 1960-67.

Every student of history and political science knows that 'Vietnam War' turned out to be to the longest humiliating and destructive conflagration for the Super Power US and the world at large. The Golaith was ultimately defeated by David.

However, at that instance, the Labour Party suffered a crushing defeat in 1966. Labour lost nine seats while the Coalition won the largest majority government in Australian history at the time. Arthur Calwell was not politically correct for the analysts of that period but later events proved that history was on his side, at least in the context of Vietnam War.

Often you have to pay dearly for your principles with defeats and death. Gandhi, Abraham Lincoln and Indra Gandhi, all met their ends with tragedy and grace. Most of the politicians, social reformers and brave journalists know this fact but they don't compromise!

Calwell had just finished a rally at Mosman Town Hall and walked to his car. A 19-year-old factory worker Peter Kocan approached him with a .22 sawn-off rifle hidden in his overcoat and shot at him. The window deflected the bullet and Calwell only suffered minor injuries.

The police said Kocan told them after his arrest: "Unless I did something out of the ordinary I realised I would remain a nobody all my life. I came to the conclusion that however hard it was I would have to do something that would set me apart from other nobodies. I would not have done anything so cruel as shoot someone if I had any alternative. That's why I shot Mr Calwell. I'm sorry I caused pain to Mr Calwell... I went there with that intention [to shoot him] and when I fired a shot I didn't care if I hit him or not. I just wanted to get it over with."

This proves how often you meet a senseless situation.

Yes, even before the Presidential election 2017 was held, it was common knowledge that NDA's presidential nominee will easily win, given the available numbers. But kudos to Sonia Gandhi and the Congress party for the venerable stand they took and the sober way in which they fought the race and almost lost.

Now a thrice-banned RSS will have its own henchman who occupies the Rashtrapati Bhavan. From Yogi Adityanath as Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh and Venkaiah Naidu, a smart wordsmith with a touch of comedy as VP, it is roses roses all the way. Smirthi Irani as IB Minister means the Sangh is now in full antagonistic mode and will brook no accommodation or consensus. This also proves that Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP President Amit Shah have left no inch to yield in any quarter to the opposition. Nitish Kumar is almost on the next step to the hip; to climb the NDA band wagon for the safe bet – like always!

It is also said that superiority complex is the acute form of inferiority complex. Even after the series of election victories, the RSS is not able to slough off the peculiar persecution complex that plays in to its very DNA. The history of assassination of Mahatma Gandhi and its aftermath still haunts it and makes it feel insecure.

When the historian of tomorrow would scroll down the chronicle of this Presidential election, he would compare the two candidates on comprehensive merits. Let the future decide who was more deserving and won the moral victory!

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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