If you have still not noticed then let me repeat it for you: Kiran Bedi has been offered a ticket by BJP to fight against Sheila Dixit in the upcoming elections. This also implies that she has been offered a ticket against Arvind Kejriwal as well, as Kejriwal has well announced that he will fight against Sheila Dixit in the Delhi elections. This is a very complex situation, and needs a critical analysis. To make things clear, Kiran Bedi has not accepted the offer made by BJP.
Kiran Bedi has been hailed as a BJP supporter. She is known for all the good as well as a few bad things. She is known as an authoritarian and somebody who believes in the proper usage of power- we guess that was the reason why she has been approached by BJP. She was also a core member of the team Anna, where she used to work closely with Arvind Kejriwal. But later both of them developed few disputes and Kejriwal’s forming the political party distanced them more. Now, we are not aware of what she actually thinks about Kejriwal, but it is clear that political parties want to capitalize on the disputes among the anti-political establishment movement and uprising which took place in the country sometime back.
If, however, Bedi would have accepted the offer then it would have only tarnished the social stature she enjoys in the society. Our society has a very complex behaviour. It respects only those who maintain distance from politics but talk about political reforms. This is an oxymoron though, but people of this country don’t believe in the idea of oxymoron and consider the conflicting ideas as rational. There are people saying that Bedi understands this and knows that even if she defeats Dixit or Kejriwal, she will only be acting as a pawn in the hands of BJP, who will present her as an anti-corruption face capitalizing on her Anna association. Later, she will be treated only as a mere MLA who will have no say in the larger political scenario.
Few reports suggest that Bedi may accept the offer if BJP presents her as the Chief Ministerial candidate from the party, which is less likely given the dispute among the Delhi BJP members and the uncertainty the party sees in the present leadership.
We do not know the future of BJP or of Kiran Bedi, but certainly this report comes as a part of more complex behaviours we will see in the coming days!
This article first appeared in Youth Ki Awaaz on August 18, 2013.