For Authentic Gossip
Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Post Type Selectors

Emulating Anna Hazare: Hunger-Strike Leaders Gain Political Clout In Maharashtra

Maharashtra is witnessing re-emergence of a new kind of leadership — the hunger strike leaders — who issue diktats and dictate terms to the state from stages while sitting on hunger strikes in distant districts. The trajectory of these new leaders, Manoj Jarange-Patil from Maratha agitation earlier and Laxman Hake representing the OBC agitation currently, follows a similar pattern.  Both agitations are led by hitherto unknown activists sitting on a hunger strike suddenly catapulted to fame by ceaseless media coverage and threatening to dislodge established political leaders that go against them. And both seem backed up by invisible political forces with a clear agenda to polarise specific community vote banks beyond the splits and factions of political parties. While the Maratha agitation suddenly sprung up in the run-up to the Lok Sabha polls, the OBC agitation is picking up in the run-up to assembly polls. These new leaders seem to emulate the original hunger strike agitation leader — Anna Hazare who however fasted mainly against corruption and corrupt leaders. Incidentally, the Jarange Patil-led Maratha agitation inexplicably died down right before the LS polls soon after chief minister Eknath Shinde was heard claiming in a viral video that he would rein in Jarange Patil after state Congress chief Nana Patole complained that Jarange had got too big for his boots. Whether the OBC agitation follows this pattern, how it plays on hereon and its impact on the assembly polls, now remains to be seen.