By Sunil Rajguru : Subramanian Swamy has to be one of the most under-rated politicians in India. A one-man Army, he is responsible for kicking off many a political storm in India. This PhD from Harvard University and Janata Party president has attacked many political parties in India with great success.
His current fixation is 2G. Former Telecom Minister A Raja may have resigned in 2011, but Swamy had been gunning for him from as early as 2008. He wrote to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh asking for Raja to be prosecuted. When the PM ignored his five letters, Swamy petitioned the Supreme Court.
The SC directed the CBI to look into the matter which in turn chargesheeted many bigwigs including Raja, who ultimately landed up in Tihar Jail.
In 2011, Swamy is going after Home Minister P Chidambaram, who he has equated with Raja.
Chidambaram's last election has been challenged in court. You can be sure that there could be trouble in the years to come.
The Congress must be squirming in their seats for Swamy has even accused party President Sonia Gandhi's family of receiving kickbacks to the tune of thousands of crores. That could be another ticking time bomb. It was no wonder that his Nizamuddin house in New Delhi was attacked by Congress workers some time back.
Stalling Sethu Samuthiram & others…
Manmohan must be totally tired of getting Swamy's letters by now. (Activist Anna Hazare is not the only person who has troubled him thus) In 2009, Swamy wrote to him protesting the Sethu Samuthiram Shipping Channel project. When the PM ignored that letter too, Swamy approached the SC and got a stay on the grand project.
With Dayanidhi Maran and Kanimozhi being dragged into the 2G scam, the Congress is not the only party furious with Swamy. Sethu Samuthiram was former DMK Chief Minister K Karunanidhi's pet project. His anti-LTTE stance has also been quite unpopular in Tamil Nadu.
In the past he has also taken on AIADMK supremo J Jayalalitha on a whole bunch of corruption issues. Despite that, Jaya was pushing him for the post of Finance Minister in an attempted third front at the Centre in the late 1990s.
Swamy is a pro-Hindutva champion and has been close to the BJP, but that hasn't stopped him from attacking them either. For example in the spat between Karnataka governor HR Bharadwaj and former BJP CM Yedyurappa, Swamy backed Bharadwaj.
He has also attacked former BJP PM Atal Bihar Vajpayee casting aspersions on his role in the Morarji Desai government of the 1970s. Swamy has accused Vajpayee of sabotaging his career.
He hasn't even spared members of his own party. Ramakrishna Hegde, a Karnataka CM in the 1980s, had his squeaky clean image tarnished by the phone-tapping and land scandals, both in which Swamy played a crucial role.
Achievements and controversies galore…
In 1981, he convinced the hostile Chinese government to open the Kailash Mansarovar (in Tibet) to Indian pilgrims.
Under PM Chandra Shekhar in 1990-91, he made a blueprint for economic reforms when he was the Commerce Minister. Manmohan accepted the importance of that document when he became Finance Minister.
He has been a key member of the Planning Commission and was also a prominent resistance figure during the Emergency of 1975-77.
Of course, Swamy's career has also been dogged by controversies. Recently he wrote an article against a minority community following the Mumbai blasts. He received a lot of flak for that. In 1969, he was removed as Professor of IIT Delhi, only to be re-instated by the SC much later.
Swamy has also accused his opponents of trying to murder him!
You can criticize him, but his most popular form of attack is to approach the courts of India, which is quite a democratic approach. He has seen great success there. He has been accused of changing his ideology too often, but he has always gone after the corrupt, no matter which party they belong to.
He has been dismissed, rubbished, called a controversy monger in the past, but as the importance of the 2G scam has shown, every country needs someone like him to expose multiple issues and keep all the politicians on their toes.
The author is a Bangalore-based journalist and blogger. He blogs at http://sunilrajguru.com/
Source : Sify