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The political battalfield
Vikas Upadhyay | 01 Jun 2009

Senior minister in the Cabinet of PV Narshimharao, Arjun Singh, who even threatened to the Post of Prime-Minister Mr. Rao and has been thrown out of the party for challenging the Supreme Post, who was at one point considered by his supporter as PM

ONCE A senior minister in the Cabinet of PV Narshimharao, Arjun Singh, who even threatened to the Post of Prime-Minister Mr. Rao and has been thrown out of the party for challenging the Supreme Post, who was at one point considered by his supporter as PM in waiting has been so unceremoniously thrown out of the Cabinet of the newly constituted government in the15th Lok Sabha that it has almost stunned his supporters. But the fact of the matter is that except of his supporters nobody else is surprised by the decision of the Congress leadership and that is because Mr. Arjun Singh has himself created the situation where he left no other choice but to be thrown out of Cabinet.

Things started to move bitter when Mr. Arjun Singh instead of accepting the supremacy of Mr. Manmohan Singh started to question his authority in last Lok Sabha, at that time the Congress High-Command has decided to remove Mr. Arjun Singh from Ministry of HRD and to appoint him as Governor of some State but Mr. Arjun Singh, a veteran politician, played the OBC card which resulted into his saving his cabinet berth because his removal than would have led to the message being sent that the removal has been because of Singh’s being in favour of OBC reservation. This though saved his cabinet berth but did certainly irked the High Command.

The second nail in the coffin was the State Assembly Elections in Madhya Pradesh where at the lobbying of Arjun Singh his Son Ajay Singh, Rahul was made incharge of Election Campaign of Congress Party in State of M.P. The congress did not only performed badly in the State but Ajay Singh himself faced a very tough fight and managed to save his seat at the cost of loosing all the other seats in Vindhya Region as both father and son focused themselves completely in Churhat Constituency and neglected all the other constituencies. The displeasure of High Command became evident from the action of High Command in refusing the tickets to Mr. Ajay Singh, from Satna Parliamentry Seat, and to the daughter of Mr. Arjun Singh- Mrs. Veena Singh, from Sidhi Parliamentry Seat. This was the final warning from the party to the Singh Duo to come in terms with party line, the Junior Singh though publicly accepted the decision of the party but Mrs. Veena Singh choose to contest the election as an independent candidate and the Senior Singh decided to give tacit support to his daughter. The results as came out of 16th May proved to be the final nail in the coffin of Mr. Arjun Singh, as Mrs. Veena Singh got around 66,000 votes, 22 thousand more votes than the margin of defeat for the Congress Candidate. During Campaigns though Singh Senior had chosen not to campaign citing health as the reason but Singh Junior campaigned for the official candidate of Congress in such a manner that from his own constituency, Churhat, from where barely 4-5 months back he has defeated BJP candidate by a margin of around 12 thousand votes, this time the Congress Candidate found the balance to have been shifted to the BJP’s side and he found himself to be trailing by the margin of 12,000 votes.

Though there are two other Cabinet Ministers, Mr. H.S. Bharadwaj & Mr. Shivraj Patil, who have not found place in new Cabinet but its certain that they will either get positions in Party or could be appointed as Governor of some State but for Mr. Singh even that appears to be a distinct possibility. He has himself created a Chakravihu for himself and for his son and is now trapped in a condition where his retirement from politics is eminent. As far as Vindya region in State of M.P. is concerned hopefully it would lead to end to the caste politics, especially Brahmin-Thakur rivalry, and now may be in next elections development could be on the agenda of political parties.