It is not what you say that matters, but with what intent you say that matters.
Let me begin by saying - I am great admirer of Arun Shourie. He is one of the best intellectual mind on right side of economics. Many people, including me, wanted him to be Finance Minister in Modi Govt. This is what I tweeted in May 2014.
Arun Shourie was very active too post May 16 2014 victory. But unfortunately, Narendra Modi did not take Arun Shourie in his cabinet for political reasons. It's no secret that Arun Shourie does not enjoy great relationship with many top BJP leaders. In politics, that matters much more than talent. But it seems Arun Shourie did not take cabinet formation exercise well. It's perfectly human to feel bad if you get left out after such media hype. Arun Shourie gracefully went quiet for good period of time. But it seems his anger persisted.
Arun Shourie has publicly spoken 3 times in last twelve months and all the three times - he has been extremely critical of Narendra Modi Govt and especially Finance Minister Arun Jaitley. It's a shock to me that how he turned into such a great critic, from being a great admirer in such a short span of time. Somebody has well said that "Hate and Anger kills objectivity".
There are two ways to criticize:
1. You criticize on issues to bring a change. Here you are careful not to make it personal so that issues remain at the center; and
2. You criticize because of personal reasons. Your anger takes over your objectivity and criticism becomes so personal that issues get lost
Every Govt needs an objective well wisher who can show the Govt - the true mirror. Arun Shourie had the capacity and respect to become that person - true critc. He has many followers on right side of economics and he would have acted as great policy voice and a pressure group. But unfortunately, Arun Shourie with all these interviews have become a sore loser and his opinion sounds meaningless. His interviews have become tool in hands of people who hate Modi to mock him and add to anti Modi cacophony.
Why Arun Shourie's anger does not make any sense?
Arun Shourie has great intellectual and analytical mind. Arun Shourie knew very well what kind of Prime Minister Modi would be. Modi was never supposed to be big policy reform person. This is what Arun Shourie said in one of the interviews before May 2014 elections
Narendra Modi is a political hands on Prime Minister. He derives his strength from people, not from books or theories. Narendra Modi has become Prime Minister through sheer hard work and decades of working on the ground with people from all backgrounds. He does not need certificate from Lutyens Delhi brigade on how weak or strong Prime Minister he is. I am not suggesting Modi does not need intellectual and policy input. He does. If Arun Shourie would have been true well wisher of Modi Govt, then he would have reached out to Modi with his ideas. I am sure Modi would have listened to him.
Narendra Modi has a different approach to Governance. He believes in building stuff, removing obstacles and enabling speedy Governance. Yesterday, Devendra Fadnavis, in an interview to CNBC Awaz, talked about how Modi conducts one on one video conference calls with Chief Secretaries of all states to resolve State Center implementation issues and how he keeps track of every single issue. He gave numerous examples of how things are moving fast on many projects because of this hands on attitude of Narendra Modi.
Why Arun Shourie episode is a great reminder of how Upper middle class is not a dependable ally
Narendra Modi is building a new political coalition - lower middle class and middle middle class - and instilling a sense of aspiration in them. Upper middle class, consumer of Lutyens Delhi English media news, was never a dependable ally to begin with. It lives in its own utopian world and gets carried away by media nonsense too quickly. I am shocked even Arun Shourie speaking about cows without realizing that Modi Govt has nothing to do with cow issue...but yes that's what Lutyen's Delhi media cacophony can do to you
I am in no way suggesting that Modi Govt is doing super impressive job and above criticism. There are many issues on which one can be super critical of current Govt but please do it as a well wisher because then only it will be heard and can make a difference.
I am just an ordinary Narendra Modi Supporter. Please do share your comments.