In Punjab on January 5, Prime Minister Modi’s car, which was there to attend the BJP’s Ferozepur election rally, was stopped on the Moga-Ferozepur National Highway due to farmers’ agitation. As soon as this news broke out, saffron mobs and the puppet media blew up a nothing event as “Lapse in PM’s security” and “PM’s life in danger”.
UP rowdy ascetic Chief Minister Yogi gushed that “security lapse is a conspiracy to kill the Prime Minister”. BJP men across the country, including the Chief Ministers of Madhya Pradesh and Assam, added flavour to the screenplay by performing special pujas to prolong Modi’s life.
Modi cancelled his event and left because just 500 people were present at the BJP’s election meeting, which was scheduled to be attended by 70,000 people. Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi initially criticised Modi for playing “security lapse” drama to hide his humiliation. But after a round of BJP demonstrations, print and visual media debates that inflated the event, the same Charanjit Singh claimed responsibility for the security flaw and expressed regret, as the amplitude of the drama was high.
The Supreme Court dissolved both the enquiry committees of the Punjab Government and the Union Government and set up a ‘neutral’ Inquiry Committee to probe the incident headed by former judge Justice Indu Malhotra.
The Modi’s puppet media and the Punjab farmers who were made into Khalistanis!
The jingoistic campaign in the wake of the Pulwama attack; the campaign of ‘Maoist conspiracy to kill Modi’, which whipped up on the occasion of Bhima Koregaon – These were the campaigns of the main stream media. In the present Punjab case, the media is doing the same. They have been propagating the ideas which the RSS-BJP fascists are planning to conceptualise among the people.
“When the head of a nuclear-weapons State is stuck on a highway for a quarter of an hour, while the police and his élite personal protection force cogitate on what to do next, something is horribly wrong. The last time India’s leadership failed to act on clear and present warnings of similar dysfunctions, a former prime minster was assassinated. That should be reason enough to be serious about finding out exactly what happened — and why” says ‘The Print’ (English digital news media).
“The office of the Prime Minister of India is one of the most important of our democratic institutions. When it comes under threat, it is India that comes under threat, not the individual who happens to occupy the post”, says the Indian Express.
“The office of Prime Minister should be given the utmost security in the country. It is an issue of national security… It is the duty of the state government to legally suppress, repress and eliminate the organizations which prevent PM’s propaganda” wrote ‘Dinamani’ (Tamil Newspaper).
“The PM’s car could easily have been targeted by a well-positioned sniper or grenade-launcher, or faced an attack from a drone, an IED, or some other similarly easily-procured weapon”. Further, “The PM’s security is not just a question of his personal security but of the security of an institution that has a crucial bearing on national security, and indeed, on the life of every citizen”, reported ‘India Today’.
On the whole, the media indirectly projected the protested Punjab farmers as “terrorists”. They did this by projecting the protests of the country’s own people against the anti-people Modi as “security lapse”, “conspiracy to kill PM” and “repeat of 1984” (the year Indira Gandhi was assassinated).
In addition, a report was circulated that the pro-Khalistan organisation “Sikhs for Justice” had claimed responsibility for the security flaw in Modi’s visit. A video containing the speech of the organisation’s leader from abroad was circulated on social media.
Modi’s visit was to the election campaign; Those who picketed the road were farmers; That too the protest was pre-announced – That’s what happened. The video of the leader of a pro-Khalistan organisation saying that he was ‘responsible’ being circulated, as if it was a terrorist attack, looks like someone is playing a game behind it.
The ‘Security Lapse’ drama
Modi’s travel plan was to attend a rally in Ferozepur. He was to fly by helicopter from Bathinda airport. But the helicopter ride was cancelled due to poor weather conditions. Suddenly the travel plan was changed and it was decided to travel by road from Bathinda to Ferozepur (nearly 100 km) by car.
However, Modi’s car was stopped in a village called Piyarena and had to wait for 15-20 minutes due to farmers’ agitation on the Ferozepur-bound national highway. Modi’s election rally was also cancelled as just 500 people attended the meeting, which was scheduled to be attended by 70,000 people.
“Say thanks to your CM for I could return to the Bhatinda airport alive” Modi told to the Punjab Airport Officials before he returned. This waved the flag for the RSS-BJP’s campaign plan.
Samyukta Kisan Morcha, the umbrella organisation of various farmer unions, had earlier declared that they would protest on the day of Modi’s arrival in Punjab. Modi’s car was stopped about 1 km from where the protest took place. A video on social media shows that a special security team stood around Modi’s car with machine guns and it was the BJP men who stood in groups shouting “Hail Narendra Modi” next to the car. So their claim that the farmers caused the security lapse is a filtered lie.
Moreover, it is not the first time that Modi’s visit has been disrupted, i.e., in the language of the BJP, there have been ‘security lapses’. Earlier in 2019, crowds breached the security cordon at the Prime Minister’s rally at Ashoknagar, in West Bengal. In 2018, an impersonator talked on his way past the Special Protection Group (SPG) on to the stage. In 2017, police escorts led the convoy into a traffic jam in Noida. The RSS-BJP, which did not cry as ‘security lapse’ at those times is now howling. We cannot just pass on this just as a simple matter.
Drama for five state elections! A means of repression!!
Various progressive forces and progressive-Liberal media, who knew about the BJP and Modi, know that the current ‘Security Lapse’ drama is similar to the strategy which raised a wave of ‘patriotism’ during the Pulwama attack during the 2019 parliamentary elections; Modi is trying to create a wave of sympathy for himself and reap the votes.
No one has any objection in the fact that in order to retain power, the RSS-BJP will go to any extent. But we can understand the fact that the saffron mob’s campaign on the Punjab issue has a purpose beyond elections, when we link certain things.
First, the BJP is unlikely to win the upcoming assembly elections even if they stand upside down. The BJP is also well aware of this. This is because the fight against the Modi government’s three Farm Laws had created an anti-Modi anti-BJP sentiment among the people of Punjab. Even a small child in Punjab would abuse Modi with derogatory words.
Though the three Farm Laws have now been repealed, the Punjab farmers are not convinced. The Modi government also did not withdraw the laws with the intention of pacifying them. The intent was to temporarily dissolve the farmers’ protest; The Modi government repealed the three Farm Laws so that the class unity of “farmers” would not expand further beyond Punjab as a result of this protest, transcending their Hindu polarization. It was done particularly by keeping Uttar Pradesh elections in mind.
Modi, servant of corporates, has no intention of permanently repealing the Farm Laws. It can be seen in Modi’s speech on the day the laws were repealed. “Three farm laws were in farmers’ benefit but we couldn’t convince section of farmers despite best efforts. And I apologise to the countrymen” he said. Subsequently, Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said, “Some people did not like these laws. We moved a step back and we will move forward again”. So, the RSS-BJP is waiting and looking forward to the conducive situation for bringing these laws back.
To create such a situation, suppressing Punjab becomes a prerequisite. Because not only the farmers of Punjab and Haryana fought against the three farm laws. The farmers of Punjab and Haryana also made other agricultural organisations in the country to fight, even though they did not protest vigorously as them. They made the people of all the states to recognize and support their protests. Through their protesting methods, the farmers had brought out the corporate profit frenzy characteristics embodied within the three farm laws to a certain extent.
If the protest of the Punjab farmers is to be assessed shortly and correctly, we can say that “they acted as the engine for the struggle against the Modi government’s recolonization of the Indian farming sector”. Other states of the country are already dominated by private procurement. In this case, it is only states like Punjab and Haryana that depend on government procurement. This is the reason why these states play a leading role in the struggle against the farm laws.
This is well judged by the saffron fascists than we are. Therefore, they are moving with a plan to suppress the nationwide boil down against corporatization of the farming sector by suppressing the volatile Punjab with terrorist-separatist panic. The campaign ‘Modi’s life is not safe’ is an attempt to create justifications for it.
In addition to this, in October last year, the BSF’s jurisdiction in Punjab and West Bengal was increased from 15 km to 50 km. This should be looked in synergy with the terrorist-separatist panic. As far as Punjab is concerned, nearly half the state is under the control of the BSF through this expansion drive. In this regard, we wrote in the December 2021 issue of “Puthiya Jananayagam’’ (New Democracy) under the title “The expansion of the Border Security Force: Military dictatorship in the name of ‘National Security’”.
The RSS-BJP’s campaign on Punjab is not merely an attempt to seek sympathy and votes for elections. It has a conspiratorial motive. This is not like Pulwama; Like Bhima Koregaon, its purpose is repression. Campaigning as “state near Pakistan” and “Khalistan separatist state” is an attempt to seek justice among the people for the repression it is about to unleash on Punjab.
Now, the RSS-BJP’s “conspiracy drama” has been rendered useless among the people by progressive-democratic forces. But the campaign had not been understood as a means of repression. It is necessary to understand it this way. Because the RSS-BJP’s attack on Punjab will occur in succession along this direction.