Contronversy about Mr Jinnah being called secular

June 9, 2005

I find the current controversy surrounding Mr Advani really an over reaction to him labelling Mr Muhammad Ali Jinnah secular.

First of all, considering that he, more than anybody else has been identified with the hindutva doctrine, one wonders whether such a statement is an attempt at running with the hare and hunting with the hounds. Some newspapers have reported a balancing act by him to queer the pitch for future prime ministerial aspirations should the opportunity arise. Jinnah was never a religious hardliner in any case and if Advani said that, so what?
He can always express his opinion in a democracy. Since then, everybody has been asking him to take the resignation back which is replaying more or less the same drama that took place a month back but which had more merit.

About a month ago, the RSS chief had called for the resignations of the elderly BJP leaders. This to my mind was a far more relevant issue. In Britain, the leader of the conserative party(Michael howard) had to resign after the poll results even though he was in this early sixties, Here, Industrialists like Kumaramanglam Birla and Ratan Tata are fixing retirement ages of CEOs. at 65. A company CEO has to resign at 65 and a country CEO can go beyond 80 and that too of a diverse country like India.A prominent former US secretary of state had once said, “ The most powerful job may be that of the President of the united states but the most difficult job in the world is that of the Prime Minister of India.

Sometimes Old is not gold
Sometimes Old is overbold
In all spheres of life, younger generation one has to mould
At the risk of sounding cold, they have to be frankly told,
That one’s position one cannot permanently hold
There is a time to be active and a time to retire and fold

We have no sense of proportion or propriety or priority when we give too much attention to what Mr Advani said against others which should have been said with greater potency.


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