Prashant Kishor's 'Jan Suraaj' : is this an alternative politics for Bihar?

Photo- Indian express

After high voltage drama by Prashant Kishor (PK), whether he’s joining the Congress or not, what will be his conditions? Finally, he declined the offer to join the grand old party.

PK is still one of the favourite topics of Indian media, both print as well as 24 hours unstoppable TV medium. I am not able to understand how he gets this much time and space at a time when no party is being given this much time except the ruling party and their agendas.

Last week, Prashant Kishor had an elaborate press conference in the state capital of Bihar, Patna, where he announced his new move. It is basically to give an alternative political option to the state. He announced his program and future action plan.

This was surprising to me. This same man had been talking for a long time about consolidating the opposition parties for the 2024 election and quite often talked about how the opposition could defeat Modi in the upcoming national election.

Nevertheless, it seems his idea was not viable for most parties, particularly Congress, to believe in him.

Election manager Prashant Kishor shared in Patna that he will start a 3,000 km padayatra from Mahatma Gandhi’s Bhitiharwa Ashram in West Champaran on 2 October.

During the press conference, in his opening remarks, he mocked his ex-boss Nitish Kumar and Lalu Yadav for not doing enough for the development of Bihar. Kishore said“Under their collective rule Bihar is one of the poorest states in India.”

His statement was cynical; firstly, he was working closely with the Nitish Kumar-led government as an election manager and as a full-time supporter/adviser for Nitish Kumar. He had also formerly joined the JDU in 2018 in the presence of Nitish Kumar. However, his association with JDU could not sustain longer.

During his press conference, PK did not mention the BJP and the failure of their government as a partner of Nitish Kumar. Contrary to this, Prashant chose to attack the Lalu Yadav regime.

While I was listening to PK’s press conference to write my blog, there was some kind of ping-pong coming, the same sort of rhetoric Arvind Kejriwal started in his campaign against corruption where he had promised his ultimate goal in politics was to bring the Lokpal.

I have no idea what the status of Lokpal in Delhi state is? We will have to see the progress of the Lokpal in the AAP government in the Panjab.

PK has all right to start the “Jan Suraaj” march on the 2 October, from the famous place of Bihar, Champaran, where Mahatma Gandhi had camped to work closely with people. First, Gandhi tried to understand them; later, many of his associates started constructive social work programs for marginalised people.

Since independence, most political leaders have come to Champaran or started their campaigns from Champaran in the name of Gandhi, but the place is still waiting for transformation. People from Champaran are mostly dependent on migration.

Same way, I have not seen any action by PK, which had been suggested by the Gandhi or Gandhian way of politics.

In my opinion, PK lacks the credibility to fight against the current far-right ideology. Here is a simple fact, this man has done nothing against those groups. This 45-year-old Kishor had earlier campaigned for Narendra Modi in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. Later he went to manage the election for his customers, whoever was ready to pay the cost of his company.

There has been no Gandhian way to protect the Nation or the interests of the people in his professional life so far.

As far the Bihar politics is concerned, we as a nation are in a critical time and space where the majoritarian/communal politics are almost taking the heart and minds of people against the particular religion in our country.

In these circumstances, there is a need for combined effort to fight against the mighty power, which has the overwhelming backing of the media. I can only see alternatives in Bihar through the grand alliance, where the RJD and CPIML are relentlessly working closely even after the Assembly election in 2020.

If other like-minded political parties are serious in Bihar, they must work with the RJD and CPIML alliance.

Good luck to PK and his gang for launching his campaign on 2 October 2022 in Bihar. I don’t know why Indian media is giving news/space to PK and his future endeavour. This is good in a democratic country, but I have serious question marks.

The same or greater than PK moments have not found reporting in print or TV news. I can give two recent examples, the 23rd Party Congress of CIPM that happened between 6–10 April 2022 and the DMK student wing conducting a 2-day national-level conference on Education – Social Justice and Federalism. There was hardly any news on these in the Indian media.


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